History Nebraska Blog

Fort Robinson 2020 Dump Research


In December three members of the State Archeology Office braved cold, wind, and snow to complete a project at Fort Robinson. The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission is expanding an RV campground at the park. The expansion sits on top of the fort's dump. When the contractor began earth moving they encountered an archeological feature from the dump. After an initial investigation by State Archeologist Rob Bozell, a data recovery plan was written and a contract agreed to between NGPC and HN.



This type of Coke bottle was patented in 1937 and was produced until 1951.  The bottle was filled at the Chadron Coca Cola Bottling plant, which was in operation in 1939 and maybe earlier. 

Coca Cola Bottle


Nesbitt Soda Bottle




This is a Nesbitt soda bottle. The Los Angeles-based company began producing fruit-flavored syrups for soda fountains in 1927. In 1939 the company began bottling Nesbitt’s orange soda. More flavors were added later. 

This bottle says Fitch on the bottom. Fitch made hair care products and the bottle would have had a paper labe,l so we do not know what manner of hair product was in this particular bottle.

F.W. Fitch began manufacturing shampoo in 1898 in Boone, Iowa. He won many awards in his early years in business, raising his status in the marketplace. In 1915, he purchased land in Des Moines to build a new plant. The F.W. Fitch Company dominated much of the shampoo industry in the United States from the 1920s to 1940s. The plant included the F.W. Fitch Building (the main building), the Soap Plant, and the Soap Plant Annex and Tunnel. The main building was the first constructed in the district in 1917. The main building was included in what was known as the "North Plant," where several non-extant buildings were also located. Built in 1929, the Soap Plant allowed the firm to produce its own soap. At its peak, the company employed 400 workers, but the company declined rapidly due to loss of contracts and after investing too much money in a Sunday evening NBC radio program called "Fitch's Bandwagon." The F.W. Fitch Company Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2013.

Fitch Hair Care Bottle 02


The coin below traveled a long way to get to Fort Robinson. It is a Swedish 1 ORE coin. You can see the date of 1883 when it was minted. 1 ORE was equivalent to a penny. The back read “BRODRAFOLKENS VAL” which translates roughly, “welfare of the brother nations”. Today, cash transactions in Sweden are all rounded to the nearest Krona because ORE coins are no longer legal currency. 

Swedish 1 ORE Coin 01

Swedish 1 ORE Coin 02

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