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Historical Newsletter

January/February 2002

You are cordially invited to the

Building the State:
Nebraska, 1867-1916

celebration of
on Friday, March 1, 2002, 5 - 8 P.M.

Exhibition dedication and cake-cutting at 5:30 P.M.

Spectacular sod house!
Sensational strolling minstrel!
Convivial costumed interpreters!
Historic Hands-On Amusements!

Museum of Nebraska History,
15th and P Streets, Lincoln.

Special premium for NSHS members attending.
For more information: 402-471-4754 or 800-833-6747


Imagine building a state from scratch. That's the task Nebraskans faced 135 years ago, and their stories are the focus of a new permanent exhibit at the Society's Museum of Nebraska History. Building the State examines the promise and problems encountered as people created the political, economic, and cultural systems that became Nebraska. Through period settings, artifacts, documents, and photos, Building the State will illustrate the growth of Nebraska's towns, government, agriculture, ranching, industries, and inventions, along with changing technology, political and social movements, and the state's rich ethnic heritage from statehood in 1867 to the eve of World War I. A wealth of artifacts and photographs from the museum and library/archives collections will offer visitors insight into the amazing transformation of Nebraska during this period.

John Curry Sod House
The John Curry sod house near West Union in Custer County, Nebraska, 1886. NSHS RG2608.PH-1408

Major components of the five-thousand-square-foot gallery include a walk-through 1880s sod house; a recreation of the Goehner Brothers General Store in Seward, Nebraska; a sound station with audio clips of pioneer folk songs and period music; and a video station illustrating the development of towns in the new state.

Goehner Bros. Store
Interior of the Goehner Brothers Store, about 1900, with Peter Goehner (left) and his son, Ed, about fourteen. NSHS RG2536.PH:5-38

Society members and their families are invited to attend the exhibition opening Friday evening, March 1, 2002, from 5 to 8. Director Lawrence Sommer and Secretary of State John Gale will open the exhibit and cut Nebraska's 135th birthday cake at 5:30. Strolling minstrel Chris Sayre will perform period musical selections; costumed interpreters will be available to answer questions; and hands-on historical activities will give participants a real feel for the past. A special premium will be presented to all NSHS members in attendance. Mark your calendars today!


Teachers say,"Ooh, that's perfect" about the upcoming exhibit, and docents say,"Ahh, new stories to share." The excitement is building! To train for this new exhibit, the docents have been on a behind-the-scenes tour, "met" five settlers through oral histories, and discovered settlement secrets from historic photographs and letters. In January, docents will meet descendants and historians of four ethnic groups who settled in Nebraska and in February, we will further develop our tour content and strategies. This is a very exciting time for education as we look forward to an excellent new learning experience. For more information on becoming a docent or scheduling a tour, please call Jessica Stoner, 402-471-4757.


The Fourth Fort Robinson History Conference will be held April 25-27 at Fort Robinson State Park near Crawford. It is co-sponsored by the Society and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, with financial support from Ron and Judy Parks of Papillion and the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation. The theme for the 2002 conference is "Indian Wars Leaders and Leadership."

To be placed on a list to receive a conference registration form when available, contact Lana Hatcher at 402-471-3272, write FRHC, Nebraska State Historical Society, P.O. Box 82554, Lincoln, NE 68501-2554; or e-mail: publish@www.nebraskahistory.org.


The Nebraska State Historical Society will award three, $1,000 grants in 2002 to support research on some aspect of Nebraska history or archeology. The grants are provided by the Gladys Marie Lux Nebraska History Education Endowment Fund and the Tom and Marilyn Allan Fund, both administered by the Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation. Grant recipients will be expected to make significant use of the Society's collections to produce an article-length essay for possible publication in Nebraska History or another Society venue. Projects must be completed within one year.

The application deadline is March 1, 2002. To request application guidelines, contact NSHS Research Grant Program, Nebraska State Historical Society, P.O. Box 82554, Lincoln, NE 68501-2554; call 402-471-4747; or e-mail: publish@www.nebraskahistory.org.


The 2002 film series presented by the Society is intended as a companion piece to the new permanent exhibit, Building the State, which opens March 1. The films were selected to reflect themes and events found in the exhibit, which covers the state's development and growth, 1867-1916. All films will be shown at the Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets, at 2 P.M. There is no charge for admission. Limited seating is available.

Breaking New Ground: The Settling of the American West in Film
A Film Series Presented by the Nebraska State Historical Society

January 20 The Magnificent Ambersons (1942)
This Orson Welles masterpiece bemoans the passing of a graceful way of life for the progress of the early twentieth century
January 27 Red River (1948)
Omaha native Montgomery Clift stars with John Wayne as battling son and father driving their cattle along the Chisholm Trail
February 3 The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962)
The passing of the frontier and frontier ideals is the theme of this classic John Ford western starring John Wayne and James Stewart
February 10 O Pioneers! (1992)
Jessica Lange stars in this adaptation of Willa Cather's novel
February 17 Heartland (1979)
Based on a journal kept by a Denver widow, this film follows her experiences as she takes a job as a housekeeper on the Wyoming frontier of 1910
February 24 In the White Man's Image (1991)
The Carlisle School for Indian Students and its "civilizing" mission is recalled in this documentary
March 3 Buffalo Bill and the Indians or Sitting Bull's History Lesson (1976)
A unique view of Buffalo Bill and celebrity is presented in this Robert Altman film
March 10 Hester Street (1975)
The Americanization of Jewish emigrants on New York's Lower East Side is dramatized in Joan Micklin Silver's directorial debut

Major underwriting for this series is being provided by the Douglas Theatre Company. Additional support is provided by Audio-Visual Center of Lincoln.


The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress has announced a major initiative, the Veterans History Project, which invites individuals and organizations, including young people and schools, to help create a national collection of oral histories, photographs, letters, and diaries of war veterans, men and women of all branches of service who served abroad and at home. Students may become Youth Partners. Volunteers are working around the country using a project kit to guide fieldwork and preservation of findings. Collections will be housed at local partner organizations such as libraries and historical societies, not only at the Library of Congress. Interested persons and organizations can find more, including the online project kit, at http://www.loc.gov/folklife/vets


The Oregon-California Trails Association is accepting nominations until March 30, 2002, for its Outstanding Educator Award to recognize individuals or institutions for significant contributions to students' education about nineteenth-century westward migrations in the United States. For forms or information, contact OCTA, P.O. Box 1019, Independence, MO 64051-0519, 816-252-2276; or William E. Hill, 91 Wood Road, Centereach, NY 11720-1619, 631-585-2592.


By Cindy S. Drake, Library Curator

Family Life in a Sandhills Sod House Northwest of Thedford, Nebraska, 1929-1939, [compiled by] Edna A. B. Holley, as told to Michael E. Randall. (Boyles Family in Thomas County.)

The Life Story of Allen and Georgiana Elliott: Nebraska Pioneers, by Allen A. Elliott. (Hall Family in Harlan County.)

Hunter and Related Families: Garner, Lynch, Speer, Cotman In Halifax Co., Virginia, compiled by Jacqueline F. Strickland. (Families in Dodge and Burt counties.)

Miller Family, [compiled by Alma Bullington]. (Miller and Middleton Families in McPherson County.)

Jonas Victor Swenson Family: Sweden, Kansas and Beyond, A Preliminary Tree, [compiled by Patricia S. Smith, Sally C. Hjeerstedt, Roselyn S. George]. (Swedish American Families in Douglas And Lincoln counties.)

Williams, Miller: 150 Years, [compiled by Evelyn I. Lowell]. (Williams and Miller Families in Banner, Scotts Bluff, and Box Butte counties.)

African American Genealogy: Bibliography and Guide to Sources, by Curt B. Witcher, 2000.

The American Census Handbook, by Thomas J. Kemp, 2000.

A History of the Dutch Settlement in Lancaster County, Nebraska, by Gustav A. Bade, 2001.

Bringing Your Family History to Life Through Social History, by Katherine S. Sturdevant, 2000.

Family Ties in England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland: Sources for Genealogical Research, compiled by Judith P. Reid, 1998.

Boone County Marriages . . . 18 August 1872 through 19 October 1881, Volume 1, compiled by Carole Blaser for the Nebraska State Genealogical Society, 1999.

Nebraska Mortality Schedule . . . : Abstracted From the 1885 Nebraska State Census . . . Book 1 Adams-Howard Counties, Book 2 Jefferson-York Counties, [compiled] by Ruby Coleman; indexed by the North Platte Genealogical Society and published by the Nebraska State Genealogical Society, 2001.


The following list consists of interesting titles from or about Nebraska we were unable to acquire for our library collection. We are still looking for items on ebay and other online services, but our budget precludes us from purchasing many of the titles. Donations of the material listed would be extremely helpful. If you are aware of the availability of copies of these titles please contact Library Curator Cindy S. Drake at 402-471-4786 or e-mail to: nshs05@www.nebraskahistory.org. Besides books, booklets, pamphlets, and maps, the Library/Archives Division also seeks photographs, postcards, manuscripts, public records, and audio-visual material relating to the history of Nebraska. If you have such material that you would like to donate, please contact us.

Omaha Iron Store Co. Catalog No. 21, 1911, 312 pages.

Omaha Retired Teachers Cook Book, 1969, 98 pages.

Once Upon a Time Their Hopes Were High, Filley, Nebraska, 1883-1983, published by Miller Printery, Beatrice, Nebraska.

Old Czech Recipes for Today's Kitchens, Nebraska Centennial Edition, Czech Festival of Foods, compiled by Clarkson Woman's Club, Clarkson, Nebraska, no date given, 26 pages.

Our Children's Favorite Recipes, compiled by Parent Teachers Association of Whittier School, Kearney, Nebraska, 1946-1947, 80 pages.

Favorite Recipes of Hastings, Nebraska, Church of the Nazarene, 1976, no pages given.

Parks' Sacred Quartets, A Choice Collection of Quartets, Duets, and Sacred Songs for Male Voices, 1897, published by J. A. Parks Co., York, Nebraska. 64 pages. (We have several other titles from this company.)

Pius High Presents Striking Recipes, by Pius X High School, Lincoln, Nebraska, 1960s (?), 150 pages.

Potter Community Improvement Cookbook, 1980s, no pages given.

Priscillas Cook Book ­ Choice Recipes, 1910s, 56 pages. (Community cookbook from Red Cloud, Nebraska.)

Recipes A Matter of Taste, by the Messiah Lutheran Church Women, Aurora, Nebraska, no dates or pages given.

Recipes and Home Helps, by Salem Lutheran Church, Stromsburg, Nebraska, 1948, 100 pages.

Recipes From the Flock, by St. Paul Lutheran Church, Weeping Water, Nebraska, no date or pages given.

Recipes, Our Best to You, from the Wahoo, Nebraska, Order of Pythian Sisters Calanthian Temple, No. 43, no date or pages given.

Revision Ordinances of the Village of Ogallala, Nebraska, published by Authority of the Chairman and Board of Trustees, Volume 1, A.D. 1928, prepared by Murl M. Maupin, Lawyer, Ogallala, Nebraska.

Roberts Cookbook, published by the Roberts Dairy Company of Omaha, Nebraska, 1974, 412 pages.

Sacred Spirit: The Lakota Sioux, Past and Present, by Films for the Humanities & Sciences, 2000. (VHS Video.)

Saint Bonaventure Christian Guild, Columbus, Nebraska, 1985, 108 pages. (Cookbook.)

Sargent Woman's Club Cook Book, 1930-31, Sargent Woman's Club of Sargent, Nebraska, 90 pages.

Saunders County Plat Book, 1970, no pages given. (We have plat books for Saunders County that are similar for 1953, 1983, 1976, 1990, 1991-92, and 1993.)

Story of a Live Town: The Review: A Photographic Review of Madison, Madison County, Nebraska, from the Post Press, May 1910, official Organ of the Madison Commercial Club, approximately 40 pages.

Sutton Cook Book, 1926, 160 pages.

Town and Country Cookie Book, sponsored by the Platte Valley Extension Club, Octavia, Nebraska, 1953, 80 pages.

Thank Heaven for Home Made Cooks, by the Bensonvale Covenant Church, Omaha, no date or pages given.

Tractor Field Book with Power Farm Equipment Specifications, published by Farm Implement News Co., Chicago, 1956. 435 pages. (Includes 125 pages on the Nebraska tractor test.)

Trapper News, monthly publication from Sutton, Nebraska. (We are aware of issues published in the late 1970s and early 1980.)

United Methodist Church, Overton, Nebraska, 1990, Cookbook, no pages given.

The Victory Begins at Home: Recipes to Match Your Sugar Ration. prepared by U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, 1942, 14 pages.

W. R. Adams Co. "The Old Reliable Tanners, Fremont, Nebraska." Catalog No. 9, no date given.

Wausa Directory, April 1, 1917, by the Union Telephone Co., Wausa, Nebraska, 20 pages.

Wayne Community House Cook Book, edited by Mrs. Henry Ley, no date given.

What's Cookin? In Juniata, Nebraska, published by the Juniata Ladies Aid, 1948.

Whiskers, Whisks and Whimsy-A Low Fat, Low Calorie Cookbook to Benefit the Nebraska Humane Society, 1995.

Who's Who in Callaway or Our Great and Near Great by V. A. Vangreen, ca. 1905. (Callaway, Nebraska.)

With a Little Help From our Friends, by the Hebron, Nebraska Jaycettes, no date given.

YMCA Cookbook, Beatrice, Nebraska, no date or pages given. Contains a brief history of the Beatrice YMCA.

World Recipes, Joslyn (Omaha, Nebraska) Elementary School Presents Ethnic Recipes From Around the World, no date or pages given.

Young Sand Hills Cowboy, by Francis Lynde Kroll, published by Grosset & Dunlap, 1953, illustrated by Charles H. Greer, 189 pages. (Fiction book set in Nebraska.)

Zion Lutheran Church, Worms, Nebraska, 115 Years Under God's Grace, 1874-1989, no pages given. (Cookbook.)


January 13: Sunday at the Museum Series. Oral historian Barbara Sommer will give a presentation on interviewing for and transcribing oral histories. She will discuss what kind of material should be sought, recorded, and archived, and the techniques and etiquette of interviewing. 2 P.M. with reception following, free and open to the public, John G. Neihardt State Historic Site, Bancroft. For information contact the Neihardt Site at 1-888-777-4667.

January 15: Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation, Mouth of the Platte Chapter, presentation by Dr. Hal Stearns, noted authority on Lewis and Clark. Meet at Caniglia's Restaurant, 1114 South 7th St., Omaha, at 6 P.M. For reservations (required) and entree choice (steak/chicken/pasta), call 402-331-7241 or e-mail mouthoftheplatte@aol.com

January 17: Brown Bag lecture, presentation on American Bounty food project, by John Carter, NSHS curator of special projects. 12 noon, Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets, Lincoln. Free and open to the public.

January 17: Lincoln Corral of Westerners, "A Post Card Tour of Lincoln," by Ed Zimmer and Matt Hansen. Meet at Holiday Inn, Ninth and P Streets, Lincoln, at 6:30 P.M. For reservations (required) call Margaret Allington at 402-391-3252.

January 17: Omaha Corral of Westerners, "The Blacks in Brownville," by Patrick Kennedy. Meet at Caniglia's Restaurant, 1114 South 7th St., Omaha, at 6 P.M. For reservations (required), call Bob Savage at 402-391-3252.

February 10: Sunday at the Museum Series. Wayne State College madrigal singers will perform choral music from the fifteenth through the twentieth centuries appropriate for the Valentine season. 2 P.M., with reception following, free and open to the public, Neihardt State Historic Site, Bancroft. For information contact the Neihardt Site as above.

February 14: Lincoln Corral of Westerners, "The History of Nebraska's License Plates," by Cindy Drake, NSHS library curator. Meet as above.

February 19: Lewis and Clark Trail Heritage Foundation, Mouth of the Platte Chapter, speaker from Big Muddy Workshop. Meet as above.

February 21: Brown Bag lecture, topic and speaker to be announced. 12 noon, Museum of Nebraska History, Fifteenth and P Streets, Lincoln. Free and open to the public.

February 21: Omaha Corral of Westerners, "The Courthouses of Nebraska," by George Miller. Meet as above.

In observance of Martin King Day, Society headquarters and the Museum of Nebraska History in Lincoln, the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center in Omaha, and the historic sites, (except Neihardt and Cather) will be closed Monday, January 21. Call for holiday hours at the Neihardt Site (402-648-3388) and Cather Site (402-746-2653).

In observance of Presidents' Day, Society headquarters, the Museum of Nebraska History, the Ford Center, and the Historic Sites (except Neihardt and Cather) will be closed Monday, February 18. For holiday hours at Neihardt and Cather call as above.

November/December 2001 Issue

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