Nebraska State Historical Society Blog

Throwback Thursday Photo, Street Fair at Kearney

Kearney Street Fair, 1901 [RG2608.PH0-002495]

Come one, come all to today’s Throwback Thursday photo! Nebraska photographer Solomon Butcher captured this image of a street fair in Kearney, Nebraska in 1901. Men, women and children line the street enjoying the carnival’s booths, games, a carousel, and a Farris wheel.

NSHS holds nearly 4,000 of Solomon Butcher’s original glass plate negatives. Most famous for his iconic images of sod houses in Custer County, Butcher also photograph many scenes in Kearney where he and his son Lynn set up a studio in 1902.

As part of a grant from the Library of Congress, NSHS created high resolution scan of the entire Butcher negative collection. Those images are available online on the Prairie Settlement: Nebraska Photographs and Family Letters website. The high resolution scans allow us to examine details in the photograph not always visible to the naked eye. Here are a few examples taken from this 1901 photograph. 

Kearney Street Fair, edited [RG2608.PH0-002495]

Photo Booth

1. Photo Booth. Have your picture taken for $.04 or group photos for $.25. Finished in 3 minutes.


2. Children wait in line to ride the carousel. 


3. A woman rides a wooden carousel horse. 

No Spitting

4. Fine for Spitting on Sidewalk sign. 

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