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It is Naturally Tributary to the Capital City

Her Unequalled (sic) Facilities Destined to Put Her in the Front Rank - The Center of an Immense and Constantly Increasing Trade - Past Success But a Hint of the Future

     A wholesale center is dependent primarily upon the facilities for collecting and distributing the wares of the world. The volume of its business will be gauged by the extent of the patronage it can command. That Lincoln possesses ample facilities for communication with the trade centers of the east and unequalled (sic) advantages for distribution, the consideration of her railroads conclusively shows. That the volume of business naturally tributary to the Capital city, is sufficient to warrant her claims as a wholesale center is also indicated by the tabulated list of a small number of the towns which she can justly include among her patrons. It inevitably follows that Lincoln offers inducements to the whole sale dealer not excelled by any city west of the Mississippi river. Like the spokes of a wheel her ten railroads stretch out in every direction, bringing the remote parts of the state into close communication with the Capital city. The other important towns of the state are located upon the circumference of the railroad wheel, of which Lincoln


     It will be readily seen that Lincoln is thus the natural business center and distributing point of the state, and here eventually the largest and most successful business houses must be located. Merchants from the surrounding towns for a long distance can come in upon the morning trains, transact their business and return with the smallest possible expenditure of time. Orders by mail can be filled at Lincoln at least a day earlier than at any other jobbing point.

     A great wholesale interest is not a thing of sudden growth. It possession means steady, persistent, energetic effort. Lincoln has strong rivals in the field, but this fact is looked upon as an encouraging feature by her numerous dealers. The elements which are to make Lincoln eventually successful in this line have been recognized from her earliest settlement.

             The merchants who first located here had faith in the future of the city, and many of them from the first have done a profitable wholesale business in connection with their retail trade, and many who began with a small capital invested in a retail stock are now among the exclusive wholesale dealers whose success is closely identified with the prosperity of the city. Many merchants, too, have been drawn into the jobbing business, almost against their will. Purchasing in the cheapest markets on the continent, and being so fortunately located for distributing they have gradually developed a large jobbing trade without resorting to any of the means usually employed for securing it, and finding it profitable, have given more and more attention to this branch till in many instances it has become the most important department of the business.

     No more conclusive evidence of


could be cited. These opportunities are being recognized and large investments and fresh capital are being attracted to almost every branch of trade. The returns are uniformly encouraging, in fact it is gratifying to note that no wholesale house with a fair capital and experience has ever failed to realize a reasonable success. Indeed the history of the city presents only one or two failures in this line of business for any cause. Success beyond anticipation is the rule, and the foundations for many fortunes have already been laid. To this fact the substantial stone, brick and iron business blocks and the elegant private residences of our business men amply testify. We doubt if another city of its age in the country can boast of streets lined with more substantial and beautiful buildings than are visible in the business part of Lincoln. Travellers (sic) who visit the west are surprised at the elegance displayed in the capital city and wonder that such a city can now stand upon what less than a quarter of a century ago was a stretch of unbroken prairie. With such marvelous development what does the future unfold!

     Yet the jobbing trade of this city is


     Never was there a time when industry and experience, backed by sufficient capital was surer of a reward. The increase of population; each year makes enormous demands upon the distributing centers. The success of Chicago is being duplicated in a modest way at a hundred points, and although the chronic grumblers in the past have doubted the substantial nature of our progress and predicted a reaction, the city has continued to advance and now promises to more than realize the most sanguine expectations of its founders. Such faith do our jobbers have in the future of the city and state that they warmly welcome new houses even in their own particular lines. They realize that every new firm is of vital assistance to each of the old ones, and that the total business that ought to be controlled by this city is so great that rivalry, far from injuring the trade of either, increases the business of both. Each new house adds to the reputation of the city as a distributing point, and thus draws customers to all the others. The best of feeling prevails among our wholesale houses and the heartiest welcome is given to new enterprises which promise to add to the prestige and prosperity of the city. This state has but


      A vast number of its fertile acres have never felt the sharp edge of the plow. The oldest and most thickly settled counties contain but a small percentage of the population they are destined to sustain. No other country that that tributary to Lincoln can be found in the most favored parts of the globe. The famous valley of the Nile, enriched by the annual overflow of the river for untold ages, is not more productive than the rich soil of our unbounded prairies. What a few years ago was considered a waterless wilderness, fit only for the wild buffalo and the wilder Indian hunter, has been demonstrated capable of becoming the garden spot of the continent. The wealth of soil is drawing from all part of the United States and Europe a steady tide of the most enterprising and industrious people that ever settled in any country. Railroads are being pushed into the remotest sections. Eastern capital is coming in to develop the various natural resources. In short, the state is enjoying a growth almost unprecedented in the history of a country remarkable for the wonderful rapidity with which it has been developed.

Lincoln Transfer Co.,

We have twenty wagons on the street and are prepared to handle all kinds of merchandise, houshold goods, safes and heavy machinery. Latest improvements in truck of moving pianos. Office with E. T. Roberts, west side P. O. Square. TELEPHONE 178.

Window Screens.
We have the only perfect window screen in the market. Call at our office and see them.    S. A. BROWN & Co.
                          Lumber Dealers, N st., bet. 8th and 9th 

     These Paints are in every respect strictly first-class, being composed of the best and purest materials obtainable. They have a larger sale than any other paints made in this country or abroad, and although they cost a trifle more per gallon, they will do more and better work for the same amount of money, owing to their wonderful covering properties, while their superior durability renders them the most economical paints in the world. Sample Sheets and Descriptive Price List free by mail.


   H. W. Johns' Fire and Water-Proof Asbestos Roofing, Sheathing, Building Felt, Asbestos Steam Packings, Boiler Coverings, Roof Paints, Fire-Proof Paints, etc. VULCABESTON. Moulded Piston, Red Packing, Rings, Gasket, Sheet Packings, etc.
Established 1858.         175 RANDOLPH ST., CHICAGO.         NEW YORK, PHILADELPHIA, LONDON


Nichols Paint and Roofing Co., 820 P st., Lincoln

HENRY T. CLARKE, President.  JNO. T. CLARKE, Vice President.  WM. H. CLARKE, Treasurer.
    CHAS J. DAUBACH, Secretary.                           W. C. MILLS, Manager




Telephone 259.                   Orders Promptly Executed.


Plumbing, Steam and Hot Water Heating,

Gas Fitting, Gas Fixtures, Iron, Lead and Sewer Pipe
Estimates Cheerfully Furnished. Correspondence Solicited

125 No. 9th St., Lincoln.


1106 O and 118 North Eleventh Streets.

Wall Paper, Window Shades,
Mouldings, Pictures and all kinds of Goods for Interior Decorations.
You will find all the new coloraige and designs at their store.


1303 O Street. Opp. Gorman National Bank.
Estimates given on Plumbing, Heating and Gas Fitting. Contractors are requested to call.



The Advantages That Nebraska
Offers as a Grazing District.

A Paper Expressly Prepared for This Edition By Dr. Chas. E. Bessey, University of Nebraska.

     There are probably about one hundred species of plants in Nebraska which supply pasturage and hay to our domestic animals, not to mention those that are used as food in other ways. Nearly all these plants are grasses or grass like plants and most of them are natives of the region. A comparatively small number have been introduced within the last few years, and have thus added to the natural resources of the country.


I. The Grasses Proper.

     These are all narrow leaved plants with jointed, and usually round, hollow stems. The bases of the leaves sheath the stems for an inch or more. These characters will distinguish the true grasses from all other plants to which the name of "grass" is frequently applied, such as the sedges, rushes, clovers, etc.


     The grasses of the genus Panicum are very common, being found in all places and at all times from early spring to late fall. They may be recognized in most cases by the rounded, grainlike flowers (spikelets). One of the earliest of these has been in bloom for a couple of weeks. It has short and rather broad leaves, and its flowers which are about a sixteenth of an inch in diameter and look like small green shot, are in a loose spreading cluster at the top of the plant. The whole plant is not more than ten to twelve inches high. Later in the season many other species will appear, some of which attain a height of three feet or more as in the case of Panicum virgatum, an autumn species.

An introduced species, Panicum orus-galli, is the well known "barnyard grass" which is here regarded as a weed and unjustly considered to have no value. In some parts of the county, it is used for hay, for which it is very valuable. Another introduced species is Panicum millaccum, known as millet or Indian millet, and largely used in many parts of the world for its valuable hay.


     We have no native foxtail grasses, just three species have been introduced into this region from other parts of the country, and originally from the old world. Two of these are of little or no value for forage, being mere weedy grasses, but the third Sclaria italica, is the well known and valuable Hungarian grass, which has been so extensively used for the production of hay in all parts of the west. Its rank growth upon the rich soil of the plains enables the farmer to supply his animals with an excellent hay when his perennial grasses fail him.


Maps & labelsSpacerSpacerMaps & labels     No grasses of the prairies and plains are more striking than those to which the common name of Blue Stem has been given. They grow in bunches and at the period of flowering attain a height of from two to four or even six feet. Before blossoming their long and numerous leaves furnish large amounts of nutritious forage and when their stem have shot up to their full height, few wild grasses supply a more desirable hay. Several species are found in this region. They have been distinguished by common names as follows: The tallest one is known as Tall Blue Stem, Andropogon provinciulis, and it frequently attains a height of five, or six feet. The second is the small Blue Stem, Andropogon scoparius, which is much shorter, but has much the same habit as the preceding. The third one, known as Bushy Blue Stem, belongs to a different genus and bears the name of Chrysopogon nutans. It is the prettiest of the blue stems, attaining a height of from three to four feet, and bearing a spreading top of golden brown flowers. All the blue stems now grow in abundance upon the upland prairies although there is evidence that not many years since they were much less common than at present. With the changes, climatic or otherwise, that have taken place since the settlement of this region the blue stems have taken possession of the soil which previously had been occupied by other and smaller species.

Maps & labels
SpacerMaps & labels     A number of species of slender grasses may be grouped under the name of the Muhlenberg grasses, a name given in honor of old Dr. Muhlenberg of Pennsylvania, an enthusiastic student of the grasses, but now long dead. These grasses are notable for the large amount of flesh forming material which they contain, the percentage being higher in one species than any other known grass. This species is the Muhlenbergia glomosrata of the botanical books, a branching grass which is quite common, especially upon the rich moist soils which border the sloughs and "draws" of the prairie. A nearly related species, Muhlenbergia mexicana, is also common in similar situations and with the preceding, constitutes much of the so called "fine slough grass" -- so much prized in some localities by horsemen for making into hay. Other species occur in the woodlands along the streams, and those yield a valuable pasture.

     This grass is not a native of this region, but it has been so extensively sown that it is now very common. For some years grave doubts were entertained whether it would thrive upon this soil and in this climate, but trial sods proved it to be admirably adapted to both. A large field upon the experimental farm of the state university has for a succession of years yielded fine crops of this most excellent hay producing grass. All over the country fields of it may be seen, proving beyond a doubt that this old grass is fully at home in this part of the state. In the counties westward whenever Timothy has been given careful trial it has been successful. On the bottom lands it is moreover, found to endure pasturing, one tract being known to me which has been severely pastured for at least eight years without showing any signs of giving out. A grass which will endure such treatment will unquestionably be valuable for forage for all time.


     This valuable grass is probably less known in cultivation in this region than any other of the standard old grasses, although it doubtless would do well upon most soils. Stray specimens of it are to be found scattered about here and there in towns and villages and in the country about buildings. From the growth of these specimens and the result of trials on the experimental farm, there can be no doubt that it might be easily grown.

Maps & labels Spacer    We have a number of species of grasses of low growth, which are found everywhere upon the higher land and constituting a large part of the original grassy vegetation. Among these are the Mesquite grasses, one of the most common of which is the Bouteloua racemosu. It attains a height of about eighteen inches, and its flowers are clustered in numerous little drooping spikes a third of an inch long and attached to the side of the erect main stem. It is a striking grass in appearance and would be noticed by anyone on account of its oddity. It has considerable value as a pasture grass, and on account of its abundance it must be reckoned among the important wild grasses of the prairies.

     Gramma (fig. 5) is a near relative of the preceding, belonging to the same genus and bearing the name of Bouteloua oligoslachya. It is a fine leaved, fine stemmed grass, attaining a height of eight to ten inches and bearing at or near the summit one or two spikes of flowers, which stand out from the main stem nearly at right angles. The spikes are about an inch long, and are of a brown-purplish color. It is much less abundant now than formerly in this part of the state, having been largely replaced by the larger native and introduced grasses, but it may still be found scattered here and there. In many places it is erroneously called Buffalo grass, a name which should be applied to the next specimen only.

SpacerMaps & labels     This is one of the most interesting of our grasses, as it is one of the smallest. It rarely exceeds three or four inches in height, and has fine small leaves and stems. It grows in small bunches, but as it sends out numerous runners it soon spreads over considerable space, and make a pretty dense mat over the surface on the ground. In one thing this grass is quite remarkable; its flowers are of two kinds, viz; male and female, upon different plants. That is, the stamens are borne upon one set of plants, while the pistils, or young kernels, are born upon another set. Moreover, the two kinds of flowers are of such different structure and appearance that for many years they were supposed to belong to two entirely distinct species. The staminate plant (on the left, fig 6) is somewhat taller than the other, and bears at top two or three little straw-colored spikes, which stand out from the main stem at an angle. The other plant (on the right, fig. 6) bears a flower cluster which bears some resemblance to the flower cluster of the familiar Sand bur in its young state. I have often found the two kinds of plants growing together in the same patch, but I have as often found them widely separated. It is said that good seeds are rarely formed, and this fact (if it be one) is probably due to the separation of the two kinds of flowers.


     Buffalo grass was formerly very abundant in this region, covering much of the upland prairie surface, but with the advent of white men, and with the stirring up of the soil, the little westerner has been all but exterminated. Here and there small patches may still be found, but the grass has long since lost its importance as a furnisher of food for grazing animals. Upon the sand ridges in the extensive area known as the "salt marshes" near Lincoln, the buffalo grass still persists, and doubtless may still be found for many years more. By going a hundred miles or so to the westward one can still find great areas covered with buffalo grass, and in the western counties it is one of the most important pasture grasses. That it is nutritious and highly palatable can not be doubted, the avidity with which it is eaten being alone a sufficient proof. Many inquires have been made as to whether or not buffalo grass might be cultivated with profit, and but recently a foreign acclimatization society made request for seeds to be sent for trial in some of the islands of the East Indian archipelago. It is very doubtful whether it will ever pay to introduce this grass into any country with the expectation that it will become a standard pasture grass. There are so many other grasses which will yield so much more, and which will endure tramping and the stirring of the soil so much better, that we need not waste time in trying to grow the Buffalo grass. It had its place of importance once in the history of this country before the advent of the larger and more rank growing kinds, but the day of its usefulness in this part of the state has now passed away. The buffalo and the antelope fatted upon its nutritious foliage, as did also the cattle of the early settler and ranchman of twenty or twenty-five years ago, but the blue stems and the Muhlenberg grasses first, and afterwards the cultivated grasses and the clovers supplanted it, and made it useless.

     Although as yet not much grown in the region there is every evidence that it is well adapted to both soil and climate. Trials made upon the experimental farm show that it can be successfully grown, and as observation of the stray plants to be found here and there over the country indicate the same thing. Upon the University campus whenever a few seeds were scattered the plants grow up with a vigor which indicates a fitness to surroundings. It appears that seeds of the orchard grass occur as impurities in blue grass, clover, etc., and as a consequence we find every little while upon the newly made lawns in the city, rank growing plants of orchard grass, which in this way testify to their adaptation to this region. Doubtless, the time will come ere long when farmers will realize more fully that now the need of mixed grasses for food for their domestic animals, and then if not before, orchard grass will find a place in the pastures and meadows of the state.
     There are a number of grasses, all belonging to the genus Poa, to which the general name of blue grass is usually applied. They all bear more or less of resemblance to the one species best known, Kentucky blue grass (Poa pratensis) some being larger, and some smaller, but in no instance differing greatly from the type so well shown in this species. Kentucky blue grass is too well known to need description, but it may be well to say that from its long cultivation it has run into several pretty well marked varieties and that it differs also very much in appearance, whether grown upon rich or poor soil. When well grown it is one of the best pasture grasses in the world, and for a lawn it is nowhere excelled. At an early day blue grass began to appear in Nebraska. The hay brought by the army to the posts here and there often contained seeds of this grass, and these soon germinated into little plants which spread into patches of considerable extent. It is said that there are blue grass patches about the sites of all the old forts and posts in the state. In eastern Nebraska it is grown everywhere. The fields of the farmer and the lawns of the dwellers in the city testify to the adaptation of this grass to this region.

II. The Clovers.

     There are two common clovers now in cultivation in eastern Nebraska, viz; red clover (Trifolium pretense) and white clover (Trifolium repens). The first is of much greater importance than the second, and is much more generally grown, but the latter is beginning to make its appearance in pretty numerous patches in town and in country. But a few years ago nearly every one supposed that red clover would not grow as far west as this, but now but few people doubt that it can be grown even to the western counties. Upon the experimental farm the clover crop has for some years been as much a part of the regular income as upon the best of the farms in Ohio or Pennsylvania. The University campus has every year a rank growth of red clover upon it, which would convince the most skeptical as to the possibility of a clover crop in Nebraska. Red clover will soon be one of the most important crops the farmer in this state can grow, as it not only produces enormous crops of hay, but it yields excellent crops of seed, also and this doubles the farmer's profits per acre. The time is not far distant, in my opinion, when much of the clover seed of the country will be grown upon these Nebraska plains.

White clover has been sown but little, but for all that, as said above, it is spreading. It doubtless came in mixed with Red clover, and has also been sown somewhat upon lawns. Wherever it obtains a foothold it spreads with great ease, and it will even drive out the hardy prairie grasses. As a honey producing plant alone it is worth growing, and this added to its value as a permanent pasture should commend it to everyone. However, whether we sow it much or not, will matter little in the end; it is spreading rapidly and will soon be found everywhere sending up its nutritious foliage, and its honey-laden sweet scented flowers.


© 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 for NEGenWeb Project by Ted & Carole Miller

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