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The oldest town in the State, which at one time boasted a population of over 2,000, has now only about 200 inhabitants. It is located on the Missouri River, near the center of the County from north to south. The County Seat was removed from here to Papillion, by vote of the people in 1875. It contains at present three or four general merchandise stores, a hotel, grain warehouses, two Churches, a school house, and some elegant private residences.


A village on the line of the B. & M. Railroad, in the southeastern part of the County, was laid out in 1870. It contains a hotel, grist mill, general store, blacksmith shop, etc. Near the town, a splendid limestone quarry gives employment to a large number of men.


Is a village situated near the geographical center of the County. The town site was surveyed and platted in 1875. It contains a hotel, two merchandise stores, a drug store, harness, and blacksmith shop etc.


Is a small town on the Union Pacific Railroad, in the northeastern part of the County. It is the shipping and trading point of a well-settled farming country.

     FOREST CITY, PLATTFORD, XENIA, and NASBY, are Postoffices.


     Saline County was created in 1855, and organized in 1862. It is located in the southeastern part of the State, in the third tier of Counties west of the Missouri River, and is bounded on the north by Seward, east by Lancaster and Gage, south by Jefferson, and west by Fillmore County, containing 576 square miles, or 368,640 acres.

     WATER COURSES.--The Big Blue River flows from north to south, through the eastern tier of townships, and furnishes most excellent water-power. The West Blue River joins the Big Blue



in the northeastern part of the County. Turkey Creek, also a good mill stream, flows in a southeasterly course entirely through the County; besides which there are Swan, Walnut, Plummers, Dry, Brush, Spring, Johnson, Squaw, and many smaller Creeks and rivulets. The splendid water-power of this County is an element of great wealth, and only awaits development. Six grist wills are now in operation.

     TIMBER.--The Big Blue and its tributaries are well timbered along their banks, with oak, cottonwood, ash, walnut, etc. Large artificial groves adorn almost every farm, while many are surrounded with honey-locust and Osage-orange hedges. The amount of forest timber planted is 1,835 acres; hedge fence, 174 miles.

     FRUIT.--There are many thrifty orchards and vineyards in the County, bearing the choicest fruits. 32,128 apple, 854 pear, 28,659 peach, 3,509 plum, 9,135 cherry trees, 5,564 grape vines, are returned.

     BUILDING MATERIAL.--Magnesian limestone of the finest quality is abundant. Large quarries are being worked near the center of the County, where there are also extensive kilns for burning lime, much of which is shipped abroad. Building sand, and clay for the manufacture of brick, are plentiful.

     TOPOGRAPHY.--In the northern portion of the County, there are broad stretches of nearly level prairie; in the central and southern portions, the surface is gently undulating, with a gradual rise to the westward, the eastern border of the County being about 1,330 feet, and the western border 1,550 feet above the sea level.

     The streams all have wide bottoms on each side, the land being rich and dry, and not subject to overflow. The Valley of the Big Blue, which runs a distance of about twenty miles through this County, is famous for its beauty and fertility. The Valleys of the West Blue, Turkey and Swan Creeks, are also very fine throughout their whole length.

     CROPS.--The area under cultivation, reported for 1879, was 100,986 acres. Winter wheat, 281 acres, 5,500 bushels; spring wheat, 47,720 acres, 579,602 bushels; rye, 1,759 acres, 28,699 bushels; corn, 35,101 acres, 1,491,850 bushels; barley, 7,648 acres, 189,573 bushels; oats, 7,295 acres, 138,403 bushels; buckwheat, twenty-eight acres, 2,789 bushels; sorghum, thirty-seven acres,



3,700 gallons; flax, 108 1/2 acres, 911 bushels; broom corn, fifty-one acres, twenty-one tons; millet and Hungarian, 363 acres, 869 tons; tobacco, five acres, 3,783 pounds; potatoes, 556 acres, 70,707 bushels.

     HISTORICAL.--General Victor Vifquain, who located with his family near the Fork of the Blue, on the first of May, 1858, has the honor of being the first settler in the County. For nearly a year, his house was the only habitation in all that region of country. Among the first settlers to follow him were E. Frink, W. Remington, C. Haynes, T. Stevens, J. Bickle, Tobias Castor, Wm. Stanton, and James Johnson.

     From 1858 to 1860, the country was very much overrun by Indians. In August, 1857, the Comanches and Kiowas, under command of Yellow Buffalo, had a great fight with the Pawnees, commanded by Peternasbarrow. The Pawnees were defeated and driven to their reservation; the Comanches and Kiowas fell back on General Vifquain's farm, where, after hostile demonstrations, they were pacified by the gift of an ox. For two years, General Vifquain had his house mined, ready to blow up in case of Indian capture; but fortunately the occasion never arose. The General was a great friend of Peternasharrow and other head Chiefs of the Pawnees; and that tribe used to make his farm their headquarters on their trips to the buffalo grounds--as many as 1,900 camping in his timber at one time, but never doing him any injury.

     A panic occurred among the settlers in 1862, on account of Indians; and the only farm not deserted was Vifquain's, where Mrs. Vifquain and hired help remained, the General being in the army at the time.

     The following are the first County Officers elected at the first general election held in the County, in 1862: Commissioners, P. Caldwell, T. Cline, and A. Duval; Clerk, Th. Freeman; Treasurer, -- Tucker; Sheriff, W. Remington; Judge, J. S. Hunt; Surveyor, Tobias Castor.

     At the same time, SWAN CITY, at the junction of Swan Creek with Turkey Creek, in the southeast corner of the County, was selected as the Seat of justice.

     The first birth in the County was that of Victor Emmanuel Vifquain, on October 21, 1859. The first death was Thomas Dun-



can's, in 1860. The first marriage was that of Orion Johnson to Isabella West, on the 25th of March, 1861. The first school house was built on Vifquain's farm, in 1864; Miss Mollie Hess being the first teacher. The first sermon was preached at the same place, by S. Caldwell.

     First Representative from Saline County to the Legislature, J. E. Hunt (Democrat), in 1869; first Senator, J. W. Davis (Republican), in 1877; Delegate to Constitutional Convention, in 1871, Victor Vifquain.

     A County agricultural Society was organized in 1873. Fairs were held at Crete in 1873-74-75-77.

     PUBLIC SCHOOLS.--The number of school districts is 107; school houses, ninety-eight; children of school age; males, 2,325, females, 2,162, total, 4,487; whole number that attended school during the year, 2,980; qualified teachers employed, males, sixty-nine, females, eighty-seven; value of school houses, $42,756.65; value of sites, $2,096.75; value of books, and apparatus $1,974.35.

     TAXABLE PROPERTY.--Acres of land, 335,192, average value per acre, $3.37; value of town lots, $262,233; money used in merchandise, $87,253; money invested in manufactures, $18,322; horses, 5,527, value $139,168; mules and asses, 412, value $11,780; neat cattle, 8,397, value, $73,841; sheep, 2,029, value $1,932; swine, 26,289, value, $25,387; vehicles, 2,119, value, $32,850; moneys and credits, $30,533; mortgages, $15,840; stocks etc., $21,385; furniture, $11,730; libraries, $876; property not enumerated, $74,276; railroads, $339,281.68; total valuation for 1879, $2,284,943.68

     RAILROADS.--The Burlington & Missouri River Railroad runs from east to west through the northern portion, and from north to south through the eastern portion of the County.

     LANDS.--Improved lands range from eight to thirty-five dol- [sic] per acre. The B. &. M. Railroad Company own about 40,000 acres in this County at from four to ten dollars per acre.

     POPULATION.--The following are the Precincts and population of each in 1879: Crete, 2,022; Dorchester, 673; Lincoln, 616; Johnson Creek, 1,062; Turkey Creek, 607; Monroe, 489; Pleasant Hill, 918; Big Blue, 818; Wilbur, 1,388; Brush Creek, 756;



North Fork, 626; Atlanta, 446; Oliver, 234; South Fork, 562; Swan, 487; DeWitt, 713.

     Total, 12,417, males, 7,271, females, 5,146. The population of the County in 1878, 10,453; increase in last year, 1,964.


The County Seat, is located in the valley of the Big Blue, and on the B. & M. Railroad, near the center of the County from north to south. It was laid out in 1872 and is growing rapidly, having at present 900 inhabitants. Within a radius of seven miles there are four grist mills, the mills at Wilbur having a capacity of 1,000 bushels daily. There are two newspapers--Record and Opposition, one bank, three grain elevators, five general stores, three hardware, three furniture and three drug stores, two lumber yards, three hotels, two livery stables, four blacksmiths, etc., a good Union school, and five Church societies, viz: Congregational, Methodist, Christian, Catholic and United Brethren.


Is a beautiful city situated on the east bank of the Big Blue River, in the northeastern part of the County, and is also on the line of the B. & M. Railroad, a branch from which runs south from here to Beatrice, in Gage County. The town was laid out in 1870 and now has a population of 1,700. All lines of business are well represented, among which are four hotels, six general merchandise stores, five grocery, three drug, three hardware, five agricultural implement, three harness, four boot and shoe, and three furniture stores, three elevators, one grain house, three lumber and coal yards, one bank, two newspapers--the Union and Standard, one grist mill, one brewery, one windmill and pump manufactory, one brick yard, eleven lawyers, eight doctors, five real estate agents and six ministers. There are six Church buildings and three school houses. Doane College, conducted under the auspices of the Congregationalists is located here. This institution is now erecting a beautiful brick edifice, costing $10,000, to be called Merrill Hall. A number of other fine brick buildings are about to be erected here, among which are a three story hotel, to cost $6,000, and a bank building, to cost $7,000.




Is a thriving town of 400 inhabitants, situated on the Beatrice Branch of the B. & M. Railroad, and in the valley of the Big Blue, at the mouth of Turkey Creek. It contains a weekly newspaper, --the Free Press, an excellent water-power flouring mill, grain elevator, and warehouses, several stores, fine school house, etc.


Is an enterprising town on the B. & M. Railroad, eight miles west of Crete. It was laid out in 1871 and contains at present about 300 inhabitants. There are here, four general stores, two drug and one grocery store, one coal and lumber yard, one steam elevator, one livery stable, one hotel, etc., a graded school, and two Church buildings, the Christian and Congregationalist.


Located on the B. & M. Railroad, in the northwestern part of the County, was laid out in 1871, and now has a population of 500. It contains four general merchandise, three grocery, three hardware, two drug, one furniture, two agricultural implement, two harness, three millinery and one shoe store, one newspaper, the Telegraph, two lumber yards, three grain warehouses, one jeweler, and many other business establishments. It also has three Churches and a large new school house.


Is located on Spring Creek, about five miles northeast of the geographical center of the County. It was laid out in 1868 and contains at present about 400 inhabitants. In 1870 Pleasant Hill was made the County Seat, which honor it retained until 1878. Business is generally well represented here. Near the town there are extensive limestone quarries, and large kilns for making lime. On Turkey Creek, within a mile of the town, there is a good grist mill.





     Seward, formerly Green County, was created in 1855 and organized in 1865. Its name was changed by an Act of the Legislature in 1862, in honor of Hon. Wm. H. Seward, the distinguished statesman. It is located in the southeastern part of the State, in the third tier of Counties west of the Missouri River, and is bounded on the north by Butler, east by Lancaster, South by Saline, and west by York County, containing 576 square miles, or 368,640 acres.

     WATER COURSES.--The County is finely watered by the Big Blue, and West Blue Rivers and tributaries. The Big Blue flows from northwest to southeast through the central portion of the County, and furnishes excellent mill advantages. The West Blue and tributaries water the southwestern townships; Lincoln Creek and branches, the northwestern townships, and Plum Creek, the northeastern townships of the County, besides which there are numerous smaller creeks and springs.

     TIMBER.--Along the banks of the Blues and tributaries there is considerable native timber. The amount of forest timber planted in the County is estimated at 4,000 acres.

     FRUIT.--No returns have been made. There are a large number of fine orchards, however. The number of trees planted is estimated at 42,900.

     BUILDING STONE of fair quality is found in several localities.

     CHARACTER OF THE LAND.--About twelve per cent. of the County is valley, and the remainder rolling prairie and broad tables. Every stream has its wide, fertile bottoms, and from these the land rises gently, and mostly in even slopes, until the high, level tables, or undulating prairie are reached, the highest elevation, however, seldom exceeding sixty feet from the bottoms. The soil throughout the County is a rich black loam, easily tilled, and very productive for all kinds of grain and vegetables.

     CROPS.--In 1878 the wheat product was 578,588 bushels; rye, 51,320; barley, 166,860; oats, 257,290; flax, 14,050; corn, 1,863,360; potatoes, 70,356; broom corn, 62 tons.



     HISTORICAL.--The first settlements in the County were made in 1859, by a number of persons who were on their way to Pike's Peak, but hearing adverse reports from the new Eldorado, they became discouraged and started across the country from the Platte River, in Butler County, to explore the Valley of the Blue.

     Following that stream down to the junction of the West Blue, they located claims upon the beautifully timbered banks of the latter at what is now called West's Mills. In the following year a few more claims were located on the Big Blue, about half way between the present towns of Seward and Milford. This was the beginning of the settlement of what was then called Green County.

     In 1861, J. L. Davison, Esq., of Milford, was appointed by the Legislature one of the Commissioners to locate a Territorial road between Nebraska City and Fort Kearney. This road crossed the Big Blue near where Camden now stands, and was a great convenience to the through travel and heavy freight trains traversing the plains to the western posts.

     Very few settlements were made daring the years 1862-63. In 1864, the first flouring mill was erected in the County, on the West Blue, by Mr. Thomas West. The Camden Mills were built the same year, by Messrs. Parker & Roper. In 1865, the County settled up rapidly, and in all directions could be seen the breaking plow turning over the virgin soil, where to-day are many of the best improved farms in the State. In 1867, Messrs. Reed & Davidson erected flouring mills at Milford; and in 1868, H. L. Boyes, began the erection of his mill at Seward.

     PUBLIC SCHOOLS.--The number of districts is eighty-three; school houses, seventy-nine; children of school age--males, 1,842, females, 1,622, total, 3,464; whole number of children that attended school during the year, 2,390; qualified teachers employed--males, forty-three, females, eighty; wages paid teachers for the year--males, $4,947.60, females, $6,384.40; total, $10,432; value of school houses, $35,982; value of sites, $2,846; value of books and apparatus, $1,657.05.

     TAXABLE PROPERTY.--Acres of land, 334,429; average value per acre, $3.20; value of town lots, $94,284; money used in merchandise, $36,435; money used in manufactures, $6,635; horses,



4,740,value $118,101; mules and asses 453, value $12,009; neat cattle 6,648, value $57,212; sheep 1,855, value $1,810; swine 19,611, value $18,357; vehicles 1,557, value $23,802; moneys and credits, $6,101; mortgages, $25,388; stocks, $3,461; furniture, $5,890; libraries, $360; property not enumerated, $36,697; railroads, $107,532.69; total valuation for 1879, $1,628,492.99.

     RAILROADS.--The Nebraska Railway passes through the County from east to west, a few miles north of the center line. The Lincoln & Northwestern Road, completed in 1879, enters the southeastern part of the County, and runs northerly through the central portion.

     LANDS.--Improved lands are held at $7 to $25 per acre. The B. & M. R. R. Company have 40,000 acres for sale here, at $5 to $10 per acre.

     POPULATION.--In 1870, the County had a population of 2,953; in 1875, 6,601; in 1878, 7,991; and in 1879, it was estimated at 9,389.



The County Seat, is a prosperous city of 1,500 inhabitants. It is located on a fine plateau in the Valley of the Big Blue River, near the geographical center of the County, and at the intersection of the Nebraska and Lincoln & Northwestern Railways. At this point, Lincoln Creek on the west, and Plum Creek on the east, empty their waters into the Blue. The town site was laid out and surveyed in 1868, by T. Graham, Esq.; and during the summer of that year several buildings were erected, In 1870, the Nebraska Atlas, the pioneer journal of the County, was established here by Hon. O. T. B. Williams. One square of the town was set apart for a Court House, another for a market place, and a third for a high school. In addition to these, a public park, extending over five blocks, was laid out, which is now beautified with shade trees and shrubbery, and surrounded with a thick hedge of Osage orange.

     Seward is surrounded with a splendid and thickly-settled farming region, and is one of the best grain markets and commercial centers in the Valley of the Blue. It has many commodious brick business blocks, and nearly all branches of trade are represented.



The State Bank building is an elegantly finished structure. The High School building, constructed of brick and stone, is a model of beauty and elegance. Walker's Opera Hall, one of the best arranged places of amusement in the State, has a seating capacity of 1,000. The Church Societies represented are the Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist, Episcopalian, Catholic, and United Brethren. Four newspapers are published here, the Reporter, Advocate, Blade, and Atlas.


Situated in the Valley of the Big Blue, about ten miles south of Seward, contains several hundred inhabitants. It was the recognized County Seat from 1865 until 1871, when the offices and records were removed to Seward. A substantial iron bridge, costing $10,000, spans the river at this point. For a distance of one mile above and four miles below Milford, the waters of the Blue roll over a bed of solid rock, and afford the finest advantages for manufacturing enterprises. A large flouring mill is already in operation here. An excellent white and blue limestone, easily worked and susceptible of a high polish, is quarried near the town, on the south. The religious organizations are the Methodists, Congregationalists, Baptists and Presbyterians. The Lincoln and Northwestern Railroad was built to Milford in the fall of 1879, and grain elevators, depots and many other substantial improvements are now under way.


Is a promising village, situated on the West Blue, near the mouth of Beaver Creek, in the southwestern part of the County. A good flouring mill is located here.


Is a small village located on the Big Blue in the southeastern part of the County. It was settled in 1864. A good flouring mill is in operation here.


Located on the Nebraska Railway, in the western part of the County, has 300 population, and is a rapidly growing town.

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