During the Middle Ages, Handbörd consisted of what is now known as the municipality of Högsby, as well as of the parish of Fliseryd in the municipality of Mönsterås and the parish of Kråksmåla in the municipality of Nybro. During late Iron Age, the coastal area belonged to Handbörd, too. In the early Middle Ages, this coast became a separate hundred, "härad", which was called Stranda.
The name Handbörd means a place where boats could be carried across water. It refers to a crossing by the Emå Rapids. Here, the District Court also had its meetings.
The centre of this district was Högsby.
Handbörd belonged to Kalmar Castle County and was controlled by the bailiff at Kalmar Castle.