Its name is due to a clerical error in the first half of the 19th century. When Hickman's Mill applied for a federal post office, the officer in Washington, mangled the name to Hickman Mills.
It is located on the Three Trails (Santa Fe Trail, California Trail, and Oregon Trail). It is located in the southern part of the city and at one time was also a separate community until it was annexed by the city of Kansas City, Missouri in 1961. Most of the houses in the area where built in the early to mid 1950s and 1960s. The area included the former Bannister Mall and other shopping centers, but has seen a decline in the past few years, with many of the places vacant.