Tag Archives: Nebraska History

Throwback Thursday: Winter School Day

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week’s black and white photograph was taken by John Nelson. It is published and owned by History Nebraska. John Nelson was born in Sweden, in 1864. He came to Nebraska with his parents at the age of seventeen. His photographs tell the story of small town life in Nebraska during the first decades of the twentieth century. His subjects included local businesses, community activities, and early automobiles.

If you’re someone who likes history, especially history related to the state of Nebraska, check out the Nebraska Memories archive! It’s a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural materials and make them available to researchers of all ages.

The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Basketball Players Putting on Makeup

Basketball season is in full swing and we’re celebrating with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday!

In this week’s 8″ x 10″ black and white acetate negative, we have two young women, in basketball uniforms, putting on makeup. This image was taken by William Wentworth in the early-to-mid 1900s. He worked as both a freelancer and a commercial photographer, providing a unique view of architecture, businesses, and community life in Omaha.

This image is owned and published by The Durham Museum. This collection consists of 4663 negatives of images that document life in Omaha, Nebraska from 1934 through 1950. Check it out on the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural materials and make them available to researchers of all ages. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Courting Buggy

It’s never too late for a #ThrowbackThursday!

This week, we have a 5″ x 8″ black and white photograph of John H. Bruer (1891-1959) in a horse-drawn buggy on the White River bridge west of Crawford. Written on the back of this photograph are the words: “Dad in his courting buggy with Hank, the horse, doing the honors.”

This image from 1914 is published by Crawford Public Library and is owned by the Crawford Historical Society and Museum. The Crawford Historical Society and Museum, in partnership with the Crawford Public Library, digitized a number of images of the Crawford area in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The collection includes portraits of Crawford residents, photographs of local businesses, and souvenir postcards.

Are you someone who likes history? If so, check out the Nebraska Memories archive! It’s a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural materials and make them available to researchers of all ages.

The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Bruno Memorial

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week, we have a 3″ x 5″ acetate negative featuring Reverend Charles Rada, John Curtis, Leslie Kastl, Anton Cuhel, and William Wima standing beside the Bruno Veteran’s Memorial in Bruno, Nebraska.

This image was created by Aubrey C. Hurlbert. It is owned by the Thorpe Opera House Foundation and published as part of the Boston Studio Collection. This collection consists of over 68,000 negatives that record life in and around David City from the 1890s to the 1970s. Harvey Boston was a professional photographer in town and owned a portrait studio business from 1893 until his death in 1927. The business was ran by his daughter and then by his son-in-law, Aubrey C. Hurlbert. The business was later sold in 1973. Negatives and ledgers describing each photograph are stored at the Hruska Memorial Public Library in David City.

See this collection and many more on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Wreck Near Granville, N.D.

It’s time for another #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

On March 13, 1909, a Great Northern Railway train derailment occurred outside Granville, North Dakota. As seen in this postcard, the engine with the coal car is still attached and is stopped on small bridge. It is leaning to one side while the coal car behind it leans in the opposite direction. A railroad car behind it has completely derailed and lays on its side in the snow. You can see workers standing on the tracks trying to repair the damage.

This week’s image is owned and published by History Nebraska. Check out the full collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Snow in Peru, Nebraska

Winter is finally here and we’re celebrating the new season with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday!

This week’s throwback features an early 1900s winter scene in Peru, Nebraska. Snow covers the road and yards along the residential streets.

This image was donated by Lori Sailors. It is owned and published by the Nebraska Library Commission. This collection includes material on the history of libraries in Nebraska, mainly those built with Carnegie grants. Also included in this collection, are items from the 1930s related to the Public Library Commission bookmobile and items that showcase Nebraska’s state institutions.

Check out this collection and many more on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Christmas Party

We’re getting into the Christmas spirit with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday!

This week’s 3 1/2″ x 5″ black and white photograph features the Nebraska Federal Writers’ Project Christmas party from 1936, hosted at the home of Project Director Jake Gable.

This image is published and owned by the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors. This collection includes digitized items from the Rudolph Umland Papers relating to the Nebraska Federal Writers’ Project. Umland served as an editor and from 1936-1941, as Assistant State Director of the WPA’s Nebraska Federal Writers’ Project. Umland donated personal correspondence and a fifteen-volume scrapbook to the Heritage Room in 1989. This collection also includes images that were scanned from an album titled “Lincoln, Nebraska: A Photograph Album of Business Buildings.” These images date from around 1930.

Check out all the items in this collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Guard Tower at Camp Atlanta

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week’s image features a wooden guard tower at Camp Atlanta. Camp Atlanta was a camp for German prisoners of war located near Holdrege, Nebraska.

This photograph is owned by the Phelps County Historical Society and is published by the Holdrege Area Public Library. Together in partnership, the Holdrege Area Public Library and the Phelps County Historical Society digitized a collection of images portraying the history of the Phelps County since the mid 1880’s.

Check out the collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Book Club Spotlight – Outside Valentine

The cover of the novel "Outside Valentine" by Liza Ward. The D is blood red.
A red car drives away on an snowy country road.

For 60 days in the winter of 1957-1958, Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate raced across Nebraska and Wyoming, leaving 11 dead in their wake. As one of America’s most infamous and widely-reported killing sprees, Starkweather and Fugate are immortalized through movies, music, and literature. And Liza Ward, the granddaughter of two victims, Lauer and Clara Ward, decided it was time to tell the story from a new perspective. Her 2004 novel Outside Valentine is the story of her family and the trauma that has consumed it for generations. But instead of focusing on the notorious Starkweather, this novel takes a step back, concentrating on Caril Ann and those he left behind in a stunning re-telling of what happened that winter. 

Outside Valentine is a fictional account of the Starkweather killing spree, following the three narrators simultaneously. One narrator, Caril Ann Fugate, is a disenfranchised impressionable 14-year-old who finds solace and a desperate love with 19-year-old Charles Starkweather. Their romance soon burns too hot when he takes Caril on a joyride, murdering her family and anyone found in the way of that love. Four years later, the story follows Susan Hurst, who finds herself obsessively reading about the killing spree, envious of the pair’s violent love. Desperate for this kind of love and recognition, she lives a lonely life with her emotionally distant parents, all the while harboring a secret obsession for the surviving son of the Bowmans (the fictionalized Lauer and Clara Ward), whom she has never met. The son, Lowell Bowman, is our third narrator, who, 30 years later, is still dealing with the aftermath of the tragedy. Unable to cope, he runs away from his wife and children, both from and to his past.    

“There was no doubt to me he wouldn’t care. He’d blow up the world for a stuffed dog, if he thought I wanted it enough.”

Liza Ward

Outside Valentine is an engaging and lyrical read that isn’t quite “true crime” but still has that thrilling air. Because the story takes place over 30 years, the reader follows how Fugate and Starkweather’s actions spiral bigger than just themselves. Ward creates an atmosphere that sucks you in so deeply and wholly that you forget where you are. And the stark winter setting makes this a perfect book club selection coming into the colder months. Book club groups, especially those here in Nebraska, will find plenty to discuss in how Ward uses the setting to instill her characters with deep longing and isolation. She does an incredible job of identifying the true loneliness of being a young girl and the dark side of romanticism. 

While both were found guilty and Starkweather sentenced to death, Caril Ann Fugate spent 17 years in prison on a murder conviction before she was paroled in 1976. In 2020, With her father’s support, Liza Ward advocated for Fugate’s pardon, believing her grandparents “would want people to know the truth,” and that it is “time to show that young girl’s stories are worth being listened to.” And she gives young girls that opportunity in Outside Valentine

If you’re interested in requesting this book for your book club, you can find the Book Club Kit Request Form here. There are 12 copies available (Items must be requested by a librarian) 


Ward, Liza. Outside Valentine. Picador. 2004.

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Throwback Thursday: Omaha, December 1, 1911

This week’s #ThrowbackThursday is going back 111 years!

This black and white photograph shows a view of Omaha, Nebraska on December 1, 1911. The view is looking northwest from 5th and Jackson Street. The Omaha Foundry, located at 507 Jackson Street, can be seen at the lower right corner of the photo. The long narrow buildings oriented north and south are the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Freight Depots, office located at 815 Farnam Street. In the distance, you can see the large buildings located in downtown Omaha.

This week’s image is published and owned by Omaha Public Library. Items in this collection include early Omaha-related maps from the 1820s to the 1920s. Check out this collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Checking the Turkey

We’re thankful it’s #ThrowbackThursday!

This week, we have a 3 5/8″ x 4 3/4″ black and white acetate negative of two women in a kitchen checking on a turkey. This image was taken in 1939 by William Wentworth. He was a freelance and commercial photographer. He provided a unique view of architecture, businesses, and community life.

This image is owned and published by The Durham Museum. The William Wentworth Collection at The Durham Museum consists of over 4,663 negatives that document life in Omaha from 1934 to 1950.

Check out the full collection on the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission.

If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information

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Throwback Thursday: Birds Eye View, Omaha, Neb.

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week, we have a colorized postcard view of downtown Omaha, Nebraska looking toward the east from 20th and Dodge Streets.

This image is published and owned by Omaha Public Library. Items in this collection include early Omaha-related maps dating from 1825 to 1922. Also included in this collection are photographs and postcards of the Omaha area.

See more materials like this on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Nebraska Veterans

NLC is proud to honor Nebraska’s many Veterans with this week’s #ThrowbackThursday!

This week, we have a 7″ x 5″ black and white formal photograph featuring the first commanding officer of the Sioux Army Depot, Colonel Prebble, with his staff. The Sioux Army Depot was established on 19,771 acres west of Sidney, Nebraska in March of 1942. The depot warehoused and distributed ammunition and general supplies. It was deactivated in June of 1967.

This week’s image is published and owned by Cheyenne County Historical Society and Museum. Items in this collection represent the people and places of Sidney, Fort Sidney, Potter, Dalton and other communities and sites in the county. Images feature business districts in these towns, troops stationed at the fort, and William Jennings Bryan speaking at the Cheyenne County Court House.

If you like history, check out the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: “A Kiss for Cinderella”

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week, we have an 8″ x 10″ black and white photograph of Henry Fonda and thirteen-year-old Dorothy McGuire in the Omaha Community Playhouse’s production of J. M. Barrie’s “A Kiss for Cinderella”. Henry Fonda debuted on the Omaha Community Playhouse stage in 1925. He returned to Omaha in 1930, specifically to appear in “A Kiss for Cinderella” for which he also designed all of the sets. The production ran from April 28 through May 3, 1930.

This week’s image is published and owned by the Omaha Community Playhouse. The Omaha Community Playhouse collection includes digitized images of the Playhouse and some of its performances.

Check it out on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Trenching

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week’s photograph shows a steam-powered trencher digging a trench for the Crawford waterworks. Trenching was dug for pipes from the Crawford Reservoir about 7 miles southwest of the town in 1907.

This image is owned by the Crawford Historical Society and Museum. It is published by Crawford Public Library. This collection includes portraits of Crawford residents, photographs of local businesses, and souvenir postcards.

Check out this collection and many more on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Physics Classroom

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week, we have a 9 1/2″ x 7 1/2″ black and white photograph of Omaha Central High School’s physics laboratory. This is one of a series of photographs taken of the interior of the newly completed building located at 20th and Dodge Streets in 1912. The white limestone building was constructed over a twelve year period to replace the original 1872 brick building. The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

This image is published and owned by Omaha Public Schools and the Educational Research Library. Historical materials have been located in various departments and school buildings. Many schools still maintain their own collections. In 2003, staff from the Educational Research Library began collecting and organizing these materials in a central location. This collection is a small part of the District’s long history.

Check out this collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Mechanic

It’s Thursday and that means it’s time for another Throwback!

This week’s #ThrowbackThursday features an early 1900s image of a mechanic working on an automobile in the G.W. Morgan Garage in Spalding, Nebraska.

This image was created by John Nelson. It is published and owned by History Nebraska. John Nelson was born in Harestad, Sweden, in 1864. He came to Nebraska with his parents when he was 17. His photos tell the story of life in small town Nebraska during the first decades of the 20th century. He captured local businesses, community activities, and early automobiles.

See this full collection on the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Oats field, State Industrial School, Kearney

Happy #ThrowbackThurdsay from Nebraska Memories!

Like many other state institutions, the State Industrial School at Kearney raised most of its own food. Some of that food was sold to help support the institution. Today, the institutions exists as the Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Center.

This week’s image is published and owned by the Nebraska Library Commission. This collection includes material on the history of libraries in the state of Nebraska, many built with Carnegie grants. This collection also includes items from the 1930s related t the Nebraska Public Library Commission bookmobile, as well as items showcasing the history of Nebraska’s state institutions.

Check out this collection on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information.

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Throwback Thursday: Fort Sidney Soldiers

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week, we have a black and white photo from 1890. It features a group of soldiers at a temporary camp cooking over an open fire and chopping wood.

This week’s photo was donated by Marcia Tedy. It is owned and published by the Cheyenne County Historical Society and Museum. Located in Sidney, the Cheyenne County Historical Society and Museum worked with the Nebraska Library Commission to digitize items from their collection of historical photographs. Images in this collection feature business districts in the heart of these towns, troops stationed at the fort, and William Jennings Bryan speaking at the Cheyenne County Court House.

Check out this collection and many more on the Nebraska Memories archive.

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information

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Throwback Thursday: Print Shop, Fort Street Special School for Boys

Happy #ThrowbackThursday from Nebraska Memories!

This week’s image features several boys performing different tasks using print shop machinery at the Fort Street Special School for Boys.

In 1914, a new school was opened to accommodate boys who “had no interest in school at all” or were considered to be “mischief makers”, according to OPS documents. This new school provided manual training in printing and agriculture as well as metal and wood working shops. A few boys were selected to attend the new school, located at 30th and Brown Streets. The group then grew to 50 within a short time. This school encouraged the boys to use their creativity. What started as a somewhat punitive program became a sought- after assignment by students in other schools. The program was later moved to the campus of the High School of Commerce.

This image is published and owned by Omaha Public Schools and the Educational Research Library. Historical materials have been located in various departments and school buildings. Many schools still maintain their own collections. In 2003, staff from the Educational Research Library began collecting and organizing these materials in a central location. This collection is a small part of the District’s long history.

If you like history, check out the Nebraska Memories archive!

Nebraska Memories is a cooperative project to digitize Nebraska-related historical and cultural heritage materials and make them available to researchers of all ages via the Internet. The Nebraska Memories archive is brought to you by the Nebraska Library Commission. If your institution is interested in participating in Nebraska Memories, see http://nlc.nebraska.gov/nebraskamemories/participation.aspx for more information

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