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Nebraska National Register Sites
in Greeley County

Rural Sites

Church of the Virgin Mary Church of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, pdf [GY00-001] Listed 1984/02/23

The church was one of the early parishes established by the Irish Catholic Colonization Association of the United States. A major goal of the association was to improve the social and economic conditions of Irish-Americans in eastern cities by assisting their relocation to farms in Nebraska and Minnesota. The town of O'Connor was named for Bishop James J. O'Connor of Omaha, a founder of the association. Located near O'Connor, the complex includes a Romanesque Revival church, rectory, parish hall, and cemetery. Built in 1904-5, the brick church was designed by architect James H. Craddock, a Catholic of Irish descent. He also designed the churches of the other two Irish-Catholic parishes in Greeley County, St. Michael's (see separate summary) and Sacred Heart.

power plant   dam Spalding Power Plant and Dam, pdf [GY00-163,164] Listed 1998/12/31

The Spalding Power Plant and Dam, located just outside of Spalding, is significant for its association with industry. In 1889 the site originally contained a dam and flour mill. However, a few years after Jacob Vandenburg bought the property in 1901, he began to use the facilities to generate electricity; first for his own use and eventually for all of Spalding. As the demand increased he improved the power plant by adding diesel engines to supplement the electricity generated by the water powered turbines. Not only does the power plant, dam, and associated properties retain a high degree of integrity, but the original water turbines and diesel engines are still in use.

Urban Sites

Greeley County Courthouse Greeley County Courthouse, pdf [GY02-002] Listed 1990/01/10

In the fall of 1872 area residents took steps to organize a county, and the governor proclaimed Greeley County as duly established the same year. Two locations vied for the county seat designation in an election held in 1873. Lamartine was the winner. In 1874 Scotia residents succeeded in calling another county seat election, which they won. The issue of where the county seat would reside was not over however, as other communities challenged Scotia for that designation. To solidify their position Scotia residents sponsored the construction of a courthouse in 1885. Additionally, the only railroad in the county passed near Scotia, which had a spur line to it.

The present county seat, Greeley, was not established until 1886, when the Burlington Railroad was built through the county. Greeley enjoyed a spot in the center of the county and railroad connections, both important factors in becoming a county seat. After two elections Greeley finally became the county seat in 1890. The first courthouse was a two-story brick building. By 1907 the county determined that it was inadequate and a new structure was needed. A bond issue to support new construction passed in 1912. Actual construction began in 1913 and the Classical Revival-style courthouse was finished in 1914.

Wright Building Ed Wright Building, pdf (Scotia Chalk Building) [GY05-001] Listed 1979/10/11

The Scotia Chalk Building is a one-story structure located on the main street of Scotia. Erected in 1887 as a general store by Ed Wright, an early settler, the chalk rock used in the building was quarried from the chalk hills south of town. It is the only chalk rock commercial building known in the state.

St. Michaels St. Michaels Catholic Church Complex, pdf [GY06-001] Listed 1983/12/15

The church complex includes the Gothic Revival brick church built in 1909-14; the academy; a two-and-one-half-story brick building constructed in 1912; and the convent, a three-story brick structure dated 1926-27. The town of Spalding was established in 1881 and was a mission of O'Connor, the center of the Catholic Colonization Society for Greeley County. Designed by architect James H. Craddock, the monumental scale of St. Michael's Church makes the towers visible for miles.

First Presbyterian Church photo First Presbyterian Church, pdf [GY06-044] Listed 2004/04/14

Constructed in 1904 the first Presbyterian Church is located in Spalding. Built in the Tudor Revival style the church is an irregularly shaped, one-story wood frame structure. The interior features a simplified Akron plan layout.

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