Please browse the current titles from the Society's publishing program. Books may be acquired by noting the author, title, and price, then following the instructions on the order form. You may also be interested in other categories of books, or visit the navigation page for all kinds of Society publications.
Softcover, 133 pages, illustrated, with introduction, epilogue, index, and bibliography.
The transcontinental telegraph was a remarkable technological feat that had major consequences for the West and the nation as a whole. Yet relatively little has been written about it.
Recently re-discovered in the Smithsonian Institution collections, this previously unpublished diary is the only known extensive source written about the day-to-day construction of one segment of the first transcontinental telegraph line.
Brown's lively narrative is filled with period detail about individuals, road ranches, attitudes toward Indians, public promotion of the spirit of Manifest Destiny, difficulties facing construction crews, the nature of frontier law enforcement, and even the issues of secession and Civil War.
"Brown's perception, insights and lively style make this a great narrative."
-John D. McDermott, author of Guardians of the Pacific Telegraph and many books on the western experience
Read the book's prologue here. The file is a 1MB PDF. If you can't open it, download Adobe Reader (free software).
Published by Nebraska State Historical Society Books and available from NSHS Landmark Stores
$14.95 / NSHS Members $13.46 (plus tax & shipping)
To order: 1-800-833-6747
Thomas R. Buecker
Fort Robinson and the American Century, 1900-1948
2002 Nebraska State Historical Society 242 pps., 91 b&w illustrations, 5 maps, cloth,and paper, ISBN: 0-933307-29-2.
This book recounts the last half century of this famous northwestern Nebraska army post as it assumed new roles. In the early twentieth century, Fort Robinson hosted the last of the African American "buffalo soldiers" to serve in Nebraska. In the 1930s the fort was the world's largest U.S. Army Quartermaster Remount Depot, procuring and issuing horses for the military mounted services. Because of its focus on equestrian activities, Fort Robinson earned popular designation as "The Country Club of the Army." During World War II, the fort was the site of the army's primary war dog training center, and a major internment camp for German prisoners of war. Today it is Nebraska's premier state park.
The book is based on more than twenty years of research in archival records, supplemented by the personal recollections of men and women who served at Fort Robinson. More than ninety photographs and five maps supplement the narrative. The 242-page hardcover book is available for $40 plus tax and shipping ($36.00 for members of the Society) from the NSHS Landmark Store, 1-800-833-6747 or 402-471-3447.
E. Potter and L. Robert Puschendorf, Editors
Spans in Time: A History of Nebraska Bridges
1999, Nebraska State Historical Society. 112 pages, cloth, 138 black-and-white illustrations, index, 10 x 8. (out of print)
A joint publication of the Society and the Nebraska Department of Roads, this well-illustrated book reviews the history of bridge-building from early temporary spans to contemporary highway bridges. Though devoted to bridges in the modern sense, early non-span crossings, such as the floating pontoon bridge at Nebraska City, are also discussed. The book details the adoption of various structural technologies in addition to the historical circumstances surrounding bridge development in the state. A selected inventory of historic bridges is also included.
Thomas R. Buecker.
Fort Robinson and the American West, 1874-1899
2003, University of Oklahoma Press. 265 pages, paper, fifty-two black-and-white illustrations, six maps, preface, epilogue, appendices, notes, bibliography, index, 6 X 9
Fort Robinson and the American West, 1874-1899, is the first of a two volume history of Fort Robinson, Nebraska. Drawing from official government records, reports, correspondence, and historic reminiscences and accounts, the book details the fort's history from the establishment of the Red Cloud Agency in 1873 and the fort's founding as Camp Robinson in 1874, to its designation as Fort Robinson in 1878, and beyond.
Volume I ends with the Spanish-American War and the dawn of the Twentieth Century. A forthcoming second volume will cover Fort Robinson's story from 1900 through World War II and its abandonment as a military post in 1948.
Richard E. Jensen
The Fontenelle and Cabanné Trading Posts: The History and Archeology of Two Missouri River Sites, 1822-1838.
1998, Nebraska State Historical Society, Publications in Anthropology 11. 170 pages, paper, twenty-eight b/w and color illustrations, ten maps, six tables, two figures, 8 1/2 x 11
From 1822 to 1838 two civilian enclaves, the Fontenelle and Cabanné trading posts, clung to the bank of the Missouri River in today's eastern Nebraska. Now their story has been told in The Fontenelle and Cabanné Trading Posts: The History and Archeology of Two Missouri River Sites, 1822-1838, published as Volume Eleven in the Nebraska State Historical Society's "Publications in Anthropology" series.
Douglas D. Scott and Peter Bleed
A Good Walk Around the Boundary: Archeological Inventory of the Dyck and Other Properties Adjacent to the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument
1997, in association with the Nebraska Association of Professional Archeologists, 78 pp., reprinted May, 2006
This archeological inventory of the Dyck and other properties adjacent to the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument demonstrates that the warriors, using army carbines and revolvers captured from Lieutenant Calhoun's command, halted Custer's northern and western movements toward the river and forced his command back to Last Stand Hill. Abstract, figures, tables, maps, notes, and illustrations.
R. Eli Paul, compiler
Nebraska Hall of Fame
This booklet includes a biography, photos, suggested further readings, and places to visit relating to each member of Nebraska's Hall of Fame, housed in the Nebraska State Capitol. Introduction, Medal of Honor recipients, and sculptors.
Kent E. Martin
Neligh Mill State Historic Site: A Self-Guided Tour
1997, rev. ed., 26 pp.
A self-guided tour booklet with detailed description of the mill's features and the history of Neligh Mill. Includes brief biographies of mill owners and workers. The guide also features maps of each floor of the mill noting the different stages of machinery for processing flour and maps of the mill site over the years.
R. Eli Paul, editor
Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center
1997, 28 pp.
Divided into two parts, the first part of this booklet provides a concise history of Gerald R. Ford's family and his ties to Omaha. The second is a reminiscence of former President Ford written by Senator Carl T. Curtis. Together, these two accounts provide insight into the personal life and career of the only Nebraska native to become president of the United States. The booklet accompanies a permanent exhibit about President Ford located at the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center in Omaha.
Thomas R. Buecker
Fort Robinson: A Self-Guided Tour
1997, rev. ed., 32 pp.
A self-guided tour booklet with detailed description of Fort Robinson's many functions over the years. The guide opens with a map numbered with "stops" for the tour. A description of each stop follows with photographs and background on the use and history of the buildings and sites. The guide also features a map of the larger area surrounding Fort Robinson, a map noting buildings and sites on the grounds from 1874 to 1948, and a glossary of terms.
Lori A. Cox-Paul and Dr. James Wengert, editors
A Frontier Army Christmas
1996, 136 pp.
For residents of frontier army posts, the celebration of Christmas was an exercise in imagination. An important break in the routine of army life, the rich traditions of this holiday came alive in the Old West. Divided into ten chapters, the book offers a series of contrasting images of this favorite holiday: war and peace, officers and enlisted soldiers, men and women, adults and children. Preface, introduction, epilogue, bibliography, and index.
William Jennings Bryan's Lincoln: A Driving/Walking Tour
1996, 13 pp.
This booklet includes a map and written descriptions of twenty sites which tell the story of Bryan's life in Lincoln. Sites on this tour include the homes of Bryan and his friends, his law and newspaper offices, the state capitol, a statue of Bryan, and the Wyuka cemetery. An excellent resource for a Bryan field trip and study.
Elton A. Perkey
Perkey's Nebraska Place Names
2003, Rev., 4th. Ed., J&L Lee Co.(1st Ed. 1982, Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation), paper
This study of the origins of place names in Nebraska was first published by the Society in 1982, following its serial publication in Nebraska History magazine in 1977-78. The alphabetical listing is organized by county, with brief sketches of the location, founding, and naming of each place. Foreword, preface, acknowledgments, bibliography, and index.
Thomas R. Buecker and R. Eli Paul, editors
The Crazy Horse Surrender Ledger
1994, 186 pp.
This book reproduces an old ledger book from the Society's collections, recording a census of Native Americans detained at Red Cloud Agency, near Camp Robinson (later, Fort Robinson, Nebraska in 1877. The ledger contains the army's administrative and statistical record of the detained Sioux, Cheyenne, and Arapaho Indians, including Crazy Horse's band of Oglala. The listing is the most expansive seen to date of Indian veterans of the Battle at Little Bighorn and the Sioux War of 1876-77. Foreward, appendix, and illustrations.
Merrill J. Mattes
The Great Platte River Road:
The Covered Wagon Mainline Via Fort Kearny to Fort Laramie
1987, University of Nebraska Press, Bison Book (rpt. of 2nd. Ed., 1979, Nebraska State Historical Society), 583 pp.
Winner of several awards, this is an indepth study of the border towns, trail routes, river crossings, Indian encounters, stage stations, military posts and famous North Platte Valley landmarks along the Great Platte River Road to Oregon and California. It goes far beyond geography in revealing the cultural aspects of the Great Migration in its coverage of food, dress, equipment, organization, camping, traffic patterns, sex ratios, morals, manners, religion, crime, accidents, disease, death, and burial customs. Maps, illustrations, bibliography, and index.
Thomas R. Buecker
Water Powered Flour Mills in Nebraska
1983, 64 pp., paper, second printing
Reprinted in 2002, this short history begins in the territorial period and continues through the zenith and decline of water-powered flour milling in Nebraska. Introduction, maps, illustrations, appendices, and sources.
Bartlett Richards, Jr., with Ruth Van Ackeren
Bartlett Richards, Nebraska Sandhills Cattleman
1980, 289 pp., (out of print)
This is a biography of Nebraska Sandhills pioneer cattleman Bartlett Richards, detailing his life and career during the formative years of the range cattle industry. Based on his letters. Preface, introduction, epilogue, appendices, and index.
Norma Kidd Green
Iron Eye's Family: The Children of Joseph La Flesche
1977, 225 pp.
The story of the famous offspring of the Omaha Indian chief, Iron Eye, including Susan La Flesche Tibbles, known as "Bright Eyes," physician Susan La Flesche Picotte and ethnologist Francis La Flesche. Bibliography, photographs, and lineage chart.
Everett N. Dick
Conquering the Great American Desert
1975, 456 pp., (out of print)
A study of the settlement of Nebraska during the last half of the nineteenth century, with emphasis on innovations and adaptations that transformed the "Great American Desert" into a major food-producing region. Bibliography and index.
William E. Lass
From the Missouri to the Great Salt Lake: An Account of Overland Freighting
1972, 312 pp.
A history of overland freighting on the Plains from 1855 to 1880, with reference to the Platte Valley and Sidney to Deadwood routes. Bibliography, index, appendices, illustrations, and maps.
James C. Olson
J. Sterling Morton, Founder of Arbor Day
1972, 2nd Ed., Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation (1st Ed., 1942, University of Nebraska Press), 451 pp., (out of print)
A scholarly study of this noted Nebraskan who served as territorial official, Democratic party leader, and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture from 1893 to 1897. His promotion of tree planting in Nebraska culminated in the creation of Arbor Day, first observed in Nebraska in 1872. His home in Nebraska City, Arbor Lodge is now a State Historical Park. Preface, bibliography, index, and illustrations.
Return to Books by the Nebraska State Historical Society
"Housing Nebraska's Governors, 1854-1980"
1980, reprint from Nebraska History quarterly, (out of print)
Index Guide to Nebraska History Magazine, 1959-1979
1979, (out of print)
Richard D. Rowen
"The Second Nebraska's Campaign Against the Sioux"
1963, reprint from Nebraska History quarterly, (out of print)
Earl R. Harris
"Courthouse and Jail Rocks"
1962, reprint from Nebraska History quarterly, (out of print)
Index Guide to Publications and Nebraska History Magazine, 1885-1956
1956, (out of print)
Merrill J. Mattes
"Chimney Rock on the Oregon Trail"
2001, reprint from Nebraska History quarterly,
"Courthouse Rock on the Oregon Trail"
Return to Books by the Nebraska State