The ’90 Census

Government workers will soon be enumerating Nebraskans for the 1990 Census. Results will

have practical implications–including possible refiguring of Congressional districts. The

census will also provide us with fascinating information about citizens of our state and


But it’s hard to imagine that any of the 1990 census figures will be greeted with the kind of

enthusiasm generated by the census of 1890. Those numbers caused the Kearney Weekly

Hub to exult:

“Hurrah for Nebraska’s northwest! The official count of the second supervisor’s census

district of Nebraska, or the third congressional district was completed on Saturday last. This

is a most interesting and instructive… report, covering as it does the newest portion of


“It will be seen that in 1880 the population of this district was 128,021, and that in 1890 it is

372,173. The actual net gain in ten years is about sixty-six per cent, the population lacking

only 1,890 of being trebled in that time. There are now fifty-four counties in the district, in

1880 there were but thirty-three. Consequently twenty-one new counties have been

organized during the ten years. These twenty-one new counties, population marked “none” in

1880, show a population of 60,345 in 1890.

“This is a truly remarkable increase and a magnificent development. It comprises, too, in

large part, that portion of the state which the croakers declared fifteen years ago could never

be utilized except for great cattle ranges; but the cattle-man and the cow-boy have passed on

and the farmer has taken their places, the broad plains have been dotted with homesteads, and

agriculture has conquered the desert.

“A comparison of increase by counties shows that Buffalo has gained 14,598. Only one other

shows greater increase–Custer. Custer’s total, however, falls 482 behind Buffalo. This

leaves Buffalo the most populous county in the district, passing during this census period the

older eastern counties of Hall, Dodge, and Washington. Hurrah for old Buffalo!

“Considering the grand total, central and northwestern Nebraska have abundant reason for

self-congratulation at the great showing Uncle Sam has given us. We feel our oats!”

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Other Publications

The Bachelors’ Protective Union of Kearney

When the Bachelors' Protective Union gave a gala reception for two of its newly married, former members and their brides in March of 1890, the social club for young, ...

U.S. Weather Bureau in 1890s Nebraska

The U.S. Weather Bureau was established by an act of Congress on October 1, 1890. It took over the weather service that had been established in the office of the Chief ...

Canning the Way to Victory

During American participation in World War I the U.S. Food Administration, under the direction of Herbert Hoover, launched a massive campaign to persuade Americans to ...

The Shoemaker’s Ashes

"Edward Kuehl, one of the most peculiar characters that ever lived in Omaha, or anywhere else, was found dead in his bed last night in the back room of his place of ...

Crazy Horse Surrender Ledger Foreward

Red Dog, an Oglala Lakota who lived at the Red Cloud Agency, Nebraska, 1876-77 (Nebraska State Historical Society   In the summer of 1876, following the ...

Darryl F. Zanuck

Darryl F. Zanuck Darryl F. Zanuck (1902-1979), a native Nebraskan, produced some of Hollywood's most important and controversial films. He helped found 20th Century Fox ...

The Burlington’s Profitable Pork Special

Nebraska railroads were much concerned with developing an adequate economy in the areas they served. The Burlington, for example, had a long history of caring for the ...

Bungalow Filling Stations

After the giant Standard Oil Company was broken into thirty-four separate companies in 1911, the newly independent Standard Oil of Nebraska dominated the state's market ...

The Bull Fight

This is the perfect time of year for a visit to the old fishin' hole. But a group of fisherfolk from Plainview discovered that this bucolic pastime sometimes has ...

Buffalo Soldiers West

African-American soldiers on the western frontier are the focus of an exhibit at the Nebraska History Museum in Lincoln. Buffalo Soldiers West, on loan from the Colorado ...

Protection for Buffalo

The extermination of the buffalo on the Plains occurred largely between 1870 and 1885. The Nebraska State Journal of Lincoln on February 1, 1874, editorialized in vain ...

Buffalo Hunting

In late October 1877 young Rolf Johnson and three friends left their homes in Phelps County, Nebraska, for a buffalo hunt in northeastern Colorado. The hunt was not very ...
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