History of Gage County, Nebraska

This volume is divided into historical and biographical matter. For the former I am wholly responsible, but for the latter my responsibility is limited to a few biographical sketches less than a dozen out of hundreds the remainder having been prepared under the supervision of the Western Publishing and Engraving Company of Lincoln, Nebraska.

The chief value of the historical part of this book lies in its fidelity to facts. It is not claimed, however, that all has been set down that should have been written for a work of this character nor that the narrative is as complete in every instance as could be desired. Time and the limitations as to volume, imposed by my contract with the publishers, have both combined to set bounds to my work. Whatever faults the critical may discover in the following pages, this much can at least be truthfully said of this History it constitutes an earnest effort to give both to the subscribers and the public, a readable and reliable history of Gage county, something that has not hitherto been attempted.


Table of Contents

CHAPTER I The Discoverers 15
CHAPTER II Territory of Louisiana 21
CHAPTER III Nebraska up to 1866 29
CHAPTER IV Gage County 36
CHAPTER V Old Clay County 41
CHAPTER VI Topography of Gage County 45
CHAPTER VII Flora and Fauna 51
CHAPTER VIII The Public Domain 57
CHAPTER IX The Pioneers 63
CHAPTER XI First Actual Settlers 85
CHAPTER XII Narrative of Major Albert Lamborn Green 89
CHAPTER XIII First White Settlers 111
CHAPTER XIV Founding of Beatrice 117
CHAPTER XV - Narrative of Mrs. Julia Beatrice (Kinney) Metcalf 123
CHAPTER XVI Founders of Beatrice 129
CHAPTER XVII A Roll of Honor 149
CHAPTER XVIII Narrative of George Gale with Biographical Sketch 166
CHAPTER XIX Growth of Beatrice from Beginning to 1870 181
CHAPTER XX Beatrice Continued 189
CHAPTER XXI Beatrice Continued 208
CHAPTER XXII Beatrice Concluded 228
CHAPTER XXIII Blue Springs 249
CHAPTER XXV Incorporated Villages 272
CHAPTER XXVI Unincorporated Villages 290
CHAPTER XXVII County Offices and Officials 294
CHAPTER XXVIII Hospitals 303
CHAPTER XXIX Military History of Gage County 310
CHAPTER XXX The Bench and the Bar 319
CHAPTER XXXI People Who have done Their Part in Making Gage County 338


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The history of Nebraska may properly be said to begin with the voyage of the heroic La Salle in 1682. An historical sequence of events leads the mind steadily forward from his discoveries till, by well defined processes of differentiation and elimination, a point is reached where the commonwealth of Nebraska stands forth clearly defined in the mighty sisterhood of states which comprise the North American republic.