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Lincoln county was
organized and the boundaries defined by an act of the legislature
approved January 7, 1860, under the name of Shorter county. The name
was changed to Lincoln county in 1866 in honor of President Abraham
Lincoln (1809-1865). The boundaries were redefined March 1, 1871.
- Arna. An inland locality in Wells precinct. The name
derives from a village in the Grecian Archipelago.
- Bignell. This town was named for E. C. Bignell of
Lincoln, Nebraska. Mr. Bignell was superintendent of the
Burlington and Missouri railroad out of Lincoln at the time when
the road was established.
- Birdwood. A station on the Union Pacific railroad west
of North Platte. The northwest precinct of Lincoln county has the
same name. Both descriptive names are local in origin and are
named after Birdwood creek. Birdwood creek which flows through the
precinct has a locally descriptive name. Birdwood creek is a
literal translation of the Dakota Indian name Zintka-chan
Wakpala for the same creek, so given because the birdwood
or indigo shrub (Amorpha fruticosa) is commonly growing
along the stream.
- Brady. This village was platted by G. D. and Mabel
Matherson, January 28, 1889, and was incorporated in 1907. It is
situated in Brady Island precinct and both the precinct and the
town were named after the first settler in the vicinity. Mr. Brady
is believed to have been killed by the Indians about the year
1859. Another and more circumstantial account is that he was
murdered in 1833 by a French companion who had quarreled with him.
Both were members of a party of trappers coming down the Platte
river and had camped upon the island now known as Brady Island.
Shortly afterwards the Frenchman met a violent death, presumably
by the hand of a friend of Brady; but the report was given out
that he had accidently shot himself and was later picked up by the
Pawnees and died while in their care. The island where the first
tragedy occurred has been known ever since as Brady Island.*
*(See Shumway, History of Western Nebraska and Its
People, vol. 2, p. 32.)
- Denmark. A former post office and a community in Fox
Creek precinct, settled chiefly by Danish emigrants, hence the
- Dexter. A station on the Union Pacific railroad in
Sunshine precinct, west side of Lincoln county. The name is
probably local in origin.
- Dickens. The town of Dickens was named for the English
author Charles, Dickens.
- Echo. A descriptive name for a former inland postoffice
and locality in Wells precinct.
- Gannett. A station on the Union Pacific railroad, east
of North Platte, in Hall precinct. It was named for J. W. Gannett,
auditor for the railway.
- Garfield. President James A. Garfield was assassinated
about the time Garfield post office was established. It was named
in his honor, as well as the precinct in which it is situated. The
post office has been discontinued.
- Hershey. The town of Hershey was named after J. H.
Hershey, an early settler and a large rancher and land owner. Mr.
Hershey was a business partner of William Paxton and through the
influence of Mr Paxton with the railroad company he was able to
get a siding and as an honor to Mr. Hershey it was named for him
about the year 1890.
- Hindrey. A station on the Union Pacific railroad in
Brady precinct, probably named for a local resident or a railroad
- Ingham. Ingham post office was named for a man by that
name who was travelling through the country at the time when the
office was established.
- Maxwell. The original name of this town was McPherson
after the near-by fort which was named for Major-General James B.
McPherson, of Civil War fame. The Union Pacific railroad changed
the name to Maxwell in honor of an early official on the road. The
precinct has the same name. The near-by national cemetery retains
the name Fort McPherson.
- Myrtle. This town was named in honor of Myrtle Brink, a
young lady who lived in the vicinity. The precinct has the same
- Nichols. A station on the Union Pacific railroad in
Nichols precinct. The name is probably for a local resident or a
- North Platte. The town of North Platte was laid out for
the Union Pacific railroad by General G. M. Dodge in November,
1866. It is situated on the North Platte river, hence its name. It
is the county seat of Lincoln county.
- O'Fallons. A junction point on the Union Pacific
railroad. It received its name from a bluff in the vicinity. It is
believed, probably correctly, that the bluff was named for Major
Benjamin O'Fallon, soldier, Indian agent, and trader. It is also
claimed that the name is for a hunter who was killed in the
- Somerset. This place is situated in Somerset precinct
on the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy railroad. It apparently was
named after Somerset, Massachusetts.
- Spannuth. A former inland post office near the east
side of Lincoln county in Spannuth precinct, both names are
probably local in origin.
- Spear. The name for a former inland post office and a
locality near the northwest corner of Lincoln county in Birdwood
precinct, local in origin.
- Sutherland. This town was named for a Mr. Sutherland
who was one of the high officials of the Union Pacific railroad in
1869, when the town was laid out and named.
- Vroman. A station on the Union Pacific railroad on the
east side of Lincoln county in Vroman precinct. It and the
precinct were named for William Vroman, a resident of the
- Wallace. The Lincoln Town-Site Company laid out this
town and the head of that company named the town in honor of his
- Wellfleet. This village was named after Wellfleet,
Massachusetts. The name is said to be a corruption of "whale
- Whittier. This place is a former post office in
Whittier precinct which is located on the north line of Lincoln
county. It and the precinct were named for the poet, John
- Willard. The name for an inland locality in Cox
precinct, probably local in origin.
Logan county was
named in honor of General John A. Logan (1826-1886). In the early
days this county was largely settled by Civil War veterans. Its
boundaries were defined by an act of the legislature approved
February 24, 1885.
- Ford. The post office at Ford was so named because it
was located at the home of "Bud" Ford. It has been discontinued
for some time.
- Gandy. The town of Gandy was named in honor of James
Gandy, one of the oldest settlers. Mr. Gandy built the first court
house in Logan county, of which Gandy is the county seat. The
precinct has the same name.
- Gem. A former post office near the northeast corner of
Logan county, in Burt precinct. It was so named by C. T. Johnson
who owned the land where the post office was located.
- Hoagland. This place was named for W. V. Hoagland, an
attorney of North Platte, Nebraska, who homesteaded the land on
which the village was laid out.
- Kirsch. The post office at Kirsch was located at the
home of F. J. Kirsch, a farmer living north of Stapleton,
Nebraska, and was named in his honor. This office has been
- Logan. This town was named for Logan county in which it
it located. The precinct has the same name.
- Stapleton. This place is at the terminus of a branch of
the Union Pacific railroad and near the line of Gandy and Dorp
precincts. It was named for a friend of Harry O'Neill by the name
of Stapleton, a partner of the town-site promoter who offered to
give a donation to the town of Stapleton.
- Wagner. This office is located in Burt precinct. It was
named for Mr. Wegener, the man who owned the ranch on which it is
Loup County was
named after the Loup river which flows through it. The boundaries of
the original county were defined by an act of the legislature
approved March 6, 1855; and were redefined by an act approved
February 23, 1883. Gannett's treatise on place names states that Loup
county was named for the tribe of Pawnee Loups. More probably the
Loup river was so named.
- Almeria. When the Almeria post office was established
about thirty-five years ago, several names were submitted but none
were very satisfactory. The name Almeria was suggested by the
United States post office department and adopted. The town was
named in honor of Almeria Strohl, wife of Wess Strohl, the founder
of Almeria. The precinct in which Almeria is situated is called
Strohl, after Wess Strohl.
- Calamus. The town of Calamus was named after the
Calamus river which is in the immediate vicinity. The post office
has been discontinued. Calamus river is a translation of the
Dakota name Sinkpe-ta-wote Wakpa. Sinkpe-ta-wote
(food of the muskrat) is the Dakota name of calamus or sweet flag,
wakpa means river.
- Ferguson. Named after a Scotchman, John Ferguson, an
early immigrant to the vicinity and who lived just over the line
in Blaine county.
- Gracie. The town of Gracie, and also Gracie creek, were
named for a man by that name who was an old settler in the
vicinity. A local tradition gives the following account. Gracie
post office was named after Gracie creek. Gracie creek was named
for a little blind girl named Grace. Her people were traveling
through the country and camped on the bank of the creek for
several days. Little Grace loved to play in the water, and the
creek was named Gracie in her honor. This is the story told by the
local, old ranchmen with regard to how Gracie creek was named.
- Moulton. The Moulton post office was named in honor of
L. M. Moulton who was instrumental in having it established. Mr.
Moulton was also the first postmaster, serving in that capacity
for a long term of years.
- Ovitt. The post office was named in honor of Mrs. Laura
R. Ovitt who was its first postmistress.
- Taylor. The town of Taylor is named from the post
office established here about 1881, which in turn was named in
honor of Ed Taylor, a local pioneer. Taylor is the county seat of
Loup county. The precinct has the same name.
- Valleyview. This post office is situated on a high
elevation which has a good view of the neighboring valley for
several miles and on this account was named Valleyview by Walter
Hesselgesser, the postmaster.
was organized by Governor Thayer in 1890. Its boundaries were defined
by an act of Legislature, March 31, 1887. The county was named in
honor of General James B. McPherson (1828-1864), of Civil War
- Brighton. A former post office in Tryon precinct. In
pioneer days a family by the name of Brighton homesteaded in the
vicinity and the locality was known as Brighton valley. When the
post office was established it took the same name.
- Chandler. The Chandler post office, in Worden precinct.
was named for an elderly lady, Mrs. S. L. Chandler, who was living
in the vicinity at the time the office was established. Mrs.
Chandler is at present living in Sullivan county, Indiana.
- Flats. During the homestead days a Mrs. Lombard and two
of her sons homesteaded land about three miles from this town in a
broad valley which came to be known as "Lombard Flats." Later the
Lombard home was selected for the post office and in chosing a
name, Lombard was omitted and the office was called "Flats." Since
then the post office has been moved several times but it has
retained the same name.
- Forks. This town was so named because of its location
atthe fork of East and West Birdwood creek. The post office here
has been discontinued for several years.
- Lemley. A locality in Lemley precinct, both named for a
local resident. The pioneer postmaster was George M. Brooks and he
named the post office after his infant son, Lemley Brooks. The
post office has been discontinued.
- Lilac. The name Lilac was selected by the government
from a list of several names suggested for this post office. A
small lilac bush was growing in the yard of the family who wished
to establish the office, and therefore they included the name
Lilac in the list of the names which they submitted.
- Mayflower. A former post office near the line of Tryon
and Cottonwood precincts.
- Nesbit. A recently discontinued post office in Lemley
precinct, apparently named for a local resident.
- Ney. A former post office near the northeastern corner
of McPherson county, in Hall precinct, named for a local
- Omega. This town was named Omega after a biblical
reference, "Alpha and Omega, the beginning and ending" of
Revelation. On the frontier the word omega meant the
last or the end of things. This post office was at the end of the
star mail route out from Gandy, hence the name. The post office
has been discontinued.
- Ringgold. There was at one time a post office in Dawson
county called Ringgold. This office was discontinued and some of
the residents of the town moved to McPherson county. When a new
town was started here it was named by these residents after the
old town in Dawson county. On old maps the Dawson county village
is given as Ringold.
- Summit. An inland post office in the northeastern part
of McPherson county in Hall precinct. It was so named because of
its elevated position. Formerly the post office was in the
southwestern part of Thomas county in Dismal precinct.
- Tryon. Authorities and old residents differ on the
subject of the naming of this town. Some say it was named for
William Tryon, a colonial governor of America (1725-1788); others
say it was named by Judge Neville of North Platte, Nebraska; and
still others say that it was named by Mrs. Jay Smith, now of
Kearney, Nebraska, who said: "Let's keep trying on to have a
town." Tryon is the county seat of McPherson county.
- Valyrang. The post office was established at the home
of Mrs. Lou Hurd who sent in this name to the United States post
office department. She spelled the name Valley Rang but the post
office department shortened the name to Valyrang.
Madison county was
organized in December, 1867. It was named Madison at the suggestion
of the Germans at Norfolk who came from Madison county, Wisconsin.
Its boundaries were defined and the county established by an act of
the legislature approved January 26, 1856; redefined by an act
approved March 3, 1873. Gannett in his work on place names states
that Madison county was named for President James Madison
The statement that
the county was named Madison at the suggestion of German settlers
from Madison county, Wisconsin, after their former home, accords with
that of Judge McCallum in his History of Madison County,
Nebraska, as published on page 5 of the Weekly Review,
Madison, Nebraska, issued July 7, 1876, and is authoritative. Madison
county, Wisconsin, was named for President James Madison.
- Battle Creek. The Pioneer Town-Site Company laid out
this town in 1884. It was named after a near-by stream on which
General John M. Thayer in command of the Nebraska volunteer
militiamen fought a battle against the Pawnee Indians. According
to the late Albert Watkins, historian of the Nebraska State
Historical Society, this reputed battle is a myth. The precinct is
also called Battle Creek.
- Emerick. A village in Emerick precinct. It and the
precinct were named for John Emerick, a local pioneer. The
postoffice has been discontinued.
- Enola. This town was named for its founder, T. J.
Malone. Mr. Malone's name was spelled backwards, with omission of
the m, in order to form the name for the town.
- Hope. This town was named in honor of H. C. Hope,
superintendent of telegraph for the Chicago, St. Paul,
Minneapolis, and Omaha railroad. It was established in 1894.
- Kalamazoo. An inland locality in Schoolcraft precinct,
doubtless named for Kalamazoo, Michigan. The next precinct south
has the name Kalamazoo. The name derives from negikanamazo,
a word of some Indian language, variously translated as "otter
tail, beautiful water, boiling water, or stones like otters."
- Kent Siding. A station on the Chicago and Northwestern
railroad in Valley precinct.
- Madison. H. M. Barnes and his sons made the first
settlement here in the fall of 1868. Madison is usually stated to
have been named after the county. It is also authoritatively
stated that the town was named by Herman Madison Barnes, son of
Frank Barnes, homesteader of the present site. Madison is the
county seat of Madison county. The precinct is also named
- Meadow Grove. The town of Meadow Grove received its
name from a grove that stood in a meadow near the town site.
- Newman Grove. This town received its name from a
beautiful grove of natural timber (cottonwood), of about one
hundred and sixty acres in extent, which is situated in the
vicinity. The grove belonged to Newman Warren and was known as the
- Norfolk. Colonel Mathewson, one of the founders of the
city, told the folowing story concerning the origin of the name
Norfolk. When it was time to send a petition to the post office
department to have a post office established, the question of a
name was brought up for consideration. Finally the name Nor'fork,
a contraction of North Fork, was agreed upon, since the town was
located on the north fork of the river. The petition was accepted
but the post office department respelled the name Norfolk,
assuming, undoubtedly, that the petitioners had misspelled the
name. The office was established in 1867. Gannett's treatise on
place names states that Norfolk, Nebraska, was named for Norfolk
county, England. The precinct has the name Norfolk.
- South Norfolk. This junction point on the Chicago and
Northwestern railroad is situated a short distance south of
Norfolk, in Norfolk precinct, hence the name.
- Tilden. The name of this town was originally Burnett,
in honor of the first superintendent of the Sioux City and Pacific
railroad. It was changed to Tilden because of the similarity of
Burnett to Bennett in Lancaster county, which caused some
confusion in the delivery of the mail. The name Tilden was given
the town in honor of Samuel J. Tilden of New York, the lawyer and
statesman (1814-1886). The town was surveyed and platted in
- Warnerville. The post office at Warnerville has been
discontinued. The town was named for an early setfler, Mr. H.
Warner, who operated a store and an elevator for many years. It
was originally named Munsonville and was changed to Warnerville
when Mr. Warner bought land interests and started in business. The
precinct is still known as Warnerville.
Merrick county was
named in honor of Elvira Merrick (Mrs. Henry W. De Puy). The county
was established and its boundaries defined by an act of the
legislature approved November 4, 1858. The bill to establish Merrick
county and to locate the county seat at Elvira was introduced by
Representative Henry W. De Puy, from Dodge county.
- Archer. This town was named for Robert T. Archer.
- Central City. This town is the county seat of Merrick
county. The name "Central City" was given the town because it is
centrally located in the agricultural region of Nebraska.
- Chapman. This town was named after a roadmaster of the
Union Pacific railroad when the station was established. John
Donovan, the local section boss, was the first postmaster, and he
named the town after his superior officer. The precinct is also
- Clarks. The town of Clarks was named in honor of Silas
Henry H. Clark (1836-1900), who was.for many years the active head
of the Union Pacific railroad.
- Elvira. This town was at one time the county seat of
Merrick county. It was established at the same time that the
county was established and was named in honor of Mrs. Elvira
Merrick De Puy. The county seat was located here by an act of the
legislature approved November 4, 1858. The town does not now
- Palmer. This village is on the Chicago, Burlington, and
Quincy railroad, and it is believed that Palmer was named after an
official of the Burlington system.
- Silver Creek. A near-by stream has the descriptive name
Silver Creek, hence the name for this village on the Union Pacific
railroad The precinct has the same name.
- Sunrise. An inland village in Mead precinct. The name
is appropriate for a locality having a beautiful sunrise or an
unobstructed view to the east.
- Worms. An inland village in Prairie creek precinct. It
was probably named for Worms, Rhein-Hessen, Germany.
Morrill county was
named in honor of Charles Henry Morrill, a veteran of the Civil War
and regent of the University of Nebraska, 1890-1903. The county was
originally a part of Cheyenne county and was set apart and
established at the general election held November 3, 1908, and by
proclamation of Governor George L. Sheldon, November 12, 1908.
- Angora. Mr. John King is authority for the statement
that the name Angora was given about the year 1900 by the railway
officials Before the coming of the railroad the vicinity was
called Antelope Hill. The name comes from Angora, in Anatolia,
- Atkins. This is a station on the Chicago, Burlington,
and Quincy railroad. It is named for Col. A. W. Atkins.
- Bayard. The town of Bayard, in Bayard precinct, was
named in 1887 by Millard and Jap Senteny after their former home
at Bayard Iowa.
- Bonner. A station on the Chicago, Burlington, and
Quincy railroad in Bonner precinct, both probably named for a
- Bridgeport. This town is the county seat of Morrill
county. It derives its name from the local bridge over the North
Platte river, erected by H. T. Clark, the owner, of Omaha,
Nebraska, to facilitate stage travel from Sidney, Nebraska, to the
Black Hills, South Dakota. Subsequently the town was located near
the bridge site
- Broadwater. The name was given to this town by Mr.
Moeller, president of the Union Pacific railroad, and was so
designated in honor of a personal friend of his, named General
Broadwater. The precinct has the same name.
- Chimney Rock. This place is a station on the Union
Pacific railroad near the west line of Morrill county. It is so
named from a noted and conspicuous landmark called Chimney Rock
which is a conical pile of rock with a spire like top, standing
between two and three hundred feet high.
- Cleman. The Cleman post office was named in honor of
its first postmaster, John Kleman. It is in Storm Lake
- Colyer. This post office was named for Mrs. Nannie J.
Colyer, the postmaster. It is located near the southeastern corner
of Morrill county in Wier Lisco precinct.
- Goodstreak. This place is situated near the northwest
corner of the county in Good Streak precinct. It is stated that
the local pioneer physician and homesteader, Doctor Worth, having
found a place where surface fuel was plentiful, reported to his
few and widely separated neighbors that he had found a good streak
and this odd name has clung to the locality and precinct ever
- Guthrie. This is a station on the Chicago, Burlington,
and Quincy railroad in Court House precinct. It was named for S.
- Lynn. An inland postoffice in Reilly Hill precinct. It
was probably named for a local settler.
- Northport. Northport derived its name from the fact
that it is located on the north side of the North Platte
- Redington. This town, as well as the precinct, was
named in honor of the noted Indian fighter, Henry V. Redington.
During the seventies and eighties Mr. Redington made this part of
the west his headquarters. He made it his special business to
protect ranchmen from Indians who were at that time stealing a
great many cattle. Mr. Redington is still living. He resides at
- Silverthorn. An inland place in Wier Lisco precinct.
The name is probably of local origin.
- Simla. The original name of this town was Mud Springs,
a noted station of the pony express and the overland stage, and
the scene of an Indian attack during 1865. Simla was probably
named by some representative of the Burlington railway system. It
suggests Simla in India.
Nance county was
originated on February 4, 1879. It was named in honor of Albinus
Nance, governor of Nebraska, 1879-1882. The boundaries were defined
by an act of the legislature approved February 13, 1879.
- Belgrade. This town was named by James Main after
Belgrade on the Danube, "because its location on a hill resembled
that of the Serbian city."
- Fullerton. Fullerton was surveyed and platted in 1878.
It was named in honor of Randall Fuller who was one of the
earliest settlers Fullerton is the county seat of Nance county.
The precinct has the same name.
- Genoa. This name was given to the town by the Mormons
who settled here in 1857. It was named for Genoa, Italy. The
precinct has-the same name.
- Kent. A station on the Union Pacific railroad in
Council Creek precinct.
- Merchiston. A station on the Union Pacific railroad in
Council creek precinct.
- Northstar. An inland village in Loup Ferry precinct. A
number of villages in the United States have this name. The name
is suggestive of high latitude or a place facing the polar
Nemaha county was
named for the Nemaha river. The Otoe Indian name of the river is
Nimaha, from ni, water; and maha, miry; that is miry
water river. The boundaries were defined by an act of the legislature
approved March 7, 1855; redefined January 26, 1856, and November 1,
1858. A neighboring county in Kansas has the same name.
- Aspinwall. An old settler gave as the reason why the
citizens chose the name Aspinwall: "We wanted to have a big
name."Aspinwall was the longest and most impressive name that
suggested itself to them.
- Auburn. North Auburn was platted by the Lincoln Land
Company in 1869 and was originally named Sheridan. When the
Burlington and Missouri railroad was built west from Nemaha to
Tecumseh in 1881, it missed by a mile the old inland town of
Sheridan and platted a new town which was called Calvert. About a
year later the Missouri Pacific railroad was built through
Sheridan to Omaha. At this time Church Howe and Charles D. Nixon
of Oswego, New York, who owned some land through which the
Missouri Pacific railroad ran, laid out a new town-site joining
Sheridan on the east. Mr. Howe and Mr. Nixon, together with the
Lincoln Land Company, helped to agitate the county seat removal,
and, after they had succeeded in locating the court house half way
between Calvert and Sheridan, they decided to incorporate the two
towns under one name. Mr. Nixon suggested the name Auburn after
Auburn, New York (which was near his former home), and it was
adopted by both the post office and the railroads. Auburn is the
county seat of Nemaha county.
- Brock. The station at Brock was named by the railroad
officials in honor of a superintendent of the road, also said to
be a local resident. Later the post office accepted the name.
- Brownville. This town was named in honor of Richard
Brown (1822-1900), who with B. B. Frazer owned the site and
planned and platted the original town in April, 1856. The county
seat was located here by an act of the legislature approved March
7, 1855. The town was incorporated March 14, 1855, amended
February 1857, and reincorporated February 12, 1864.
- Glen Rock. This town was surveyed on September 7, 1857.
It was named by Irvin Bristol because of its location in a valley
near some stone quarries.
- Howe. The original town was named Bedford and was
platted on January 20, 1882. The post office and depot were named
after Major Church Howe. Mr. Howe was for several years the
American consul at Palermo, Italy, and later at Sheffield,
England. His home while in this vicinity was on a farm adjoining
the east side of Howe.
- Johnson. Johnson was named for Julius A. Johnson who
owned the land on which the town is located. The site was laid out
- Julian. About thirty-five years ago a post office was
established at a farm house a little more than a mile from the
present location of the town. This post office was given the name
Julian in honor of Julian Bahaud, a rich, bachelor Frenchman who
lived in the community and owned several farms near by. Mr. Bahaud
was known to all his neighbors as "Old man Julian." When the town
was established the post office was moved to its present site but
still retained the name. Mr. Bahaud was murdered at his lonely
home in June, 1899.
- Nemaha. The town of Nemaha was named for the Nemaha
river. It was incorporated by an act of the legislature approved
January 22, 1856.
- Peru. The early settlers in this vicinity came from
Peru, Illinois, and, when the town was laid out, they gave it the
name of their former home. It was incorporated by an act of the
legislature approved January 13, 1860.
- Saint Deroin. This town was washed away by the Missouri
river in 1911, but it is of interest historically. It was one of
the oldest towns in the state, laid out in 1854. Joseph Deroin, an
Otoe chief, owned the land on which the town was located and it
was named for him. The precinct still retains the name.
© 2001 for the NEGenWeb Project by Connie Snyder