First called Browns Junction, residents changed the town's name to honor pioneer settler Henry Lutkens' birthplace, the Elbe Valley in Germany.
The Little White Church on SR 7 was built in 1906 for the German-speaking Lutheran congregation.
Elbe is located on Hwy 7, near its junction with Hwy 706, the road through Ashford to Mount Rainier.
Elbe is also the home station for the Mount Rainier Scenic Railroad, which travels within 25 miles of Mount Rainier. Elbe is part of the Tacoma, WA metro area.