David Bristow

What We Found

The Army’s Best Horsemen, 1940

“Thru These Portals Pass the Army’s Best Horsemen,” reads a sign above a barracks doorway at Fort Robinson, Nebraska. But one doesn’t train a horse without some, ah, ...

Earliest known photo of Chimney Rock, 1866

Finding a long-lost artifact on eBay was still a novelty in 2009. The story made headlines when historian John Carter discovered the oldest known photo of Chimney Rock ...

Crossing the Platte, the meanest of rivers

The Platte River may be shallow, but crossing it in a wagon was a challenge.

The Power of Suggestion

Photographer Solomon Butcher was not shy about altering photos if he felt they needed it. He tells the story of this 1886 photo of the Theodore Hohman family of Woods ...

FDR at the Martin Bomber Plant

World War II raged in both theaters as President Franklin Roosevelt set out on a seventeen-city tour. The Omaha World-Herald reported on April 30, 1943, that the ...

The Church Built Top to Bottom – St. Mary Magdalene Church in Omaha

Omaha’s St. Mary Magdalene Church has the distinction of being built in reverse order. It's upper level was completed in 1903, its lower level in 1920. How is this possible?

Julius Meyer Indian Wigwam, 1878

A Jewish immigrant from Prussia, Julius Meyer followed his brothers to Omaha in the 1860s and made contact with various Indigenous nations in the region. Meyer said he ...

Why are the curbs so high?

This 1902 Kearney photo shows a growing city that is no longer a frontier town. Some of the old false-front wooden buildings remain, but we also see a substantial ...

Sugar beet farming, circa 1940

Nebraska is known for corn and cattle, but sugar beets have long been a major crop in the North Platte Valley. Here are scenes from the farm of brothers Glenn and ...

“Cocaine fiends” in Omaha, 1907

Advertisement for medicinal drops to relieve toothache, Lloyd Manufacturing Co., 1885. Courtesy National Library of Medicine Cocaine was once touted for its ...

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