History Nebraska Blog

Three New Properties Added to the National Register of Historic Places

archway at Emerson City Park

The towns of Tekamah, Emerson, and Venango are the proud homes of properties to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Nebraska State Historic Preservation Board met in January 2018 to review nominations for these properties plus a Multiple Property Document for Nebraska’s Carnegie Libraries. The board approved all four nominations and forwarded them to the National Park Service for listing in the National Register.

The properties:

Tekamah Auditorium, 1315 K St., Tekamah (Burt County). The building is significant for its association with New Deal work programs and for its roles as a government and community center. The auditorium’s primary space was constructed by the Works Progress Administration between 1936 and 1938; a single story addition was built in 1950. It now serves as city offices and a rentable event space.

auditorium in 1954

Auditorium in 1954, above; present-day, below.

auditorium present-day

Emerson City Park, a full city block along Main Street between 4th and 5th Streets, Emerson (Dixon County). Historic arched entrances (top photo) stand at the corners of the park. Each archway was constructed by a different local organization and varies in size and appearance; an elaborate fountain (below) stands at the center of the grounds. The park is significant as a local gathering place from the early 1900s until present.

fountain at Emerson City Park

Venango Public School, 201 E. Washington St., Venango (Perkins County). The school is a fine architectural example of an early-twentieth-century school building, and also representative of the development of education in Nebraska. It is a two-story-over-raised-basement Colonial Revival building, with a mid-century addition that contains an industrial technology shop, gymnasium, lunchroom, and band room. The school exemplifies the movement away from one- and two-room schoolhouses toward consolidated school districts with buildings containing individual classrooms for each subject and specialized spaces for science, home economics, typing, and a separate library. The building has not held classes since 2001 and is now in private ownership.

Venango Public School

Venango Public School, recent photo

The Nebraska Carnegie Libraries, 1902-1922. This Multiple Property Document can be applied to Carnegie libraries throughout the entire state. The document consolidates the historic background information for the sixty-nine Carnegie libraries that were built in Nebraska, laying the groundwork for future nominations of individual libraries.


--David Calease, National Register Coordinator / Historical Markers Coordinator

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