Chimney Rock Museum

How tall is Chimney Rock?

Chimney Rock in the early 1900s.

Today, Chimney Rock is estimated to be 325 feet from tip to base and 120 feet for the spire. Over the years, many people have tried to measure the Rock.

Warren Angus Ferris offered the first known estimate of Chimney Rock, “It is half a mile in circumference at the base and rises to the height of three hundred feet.

Captain Benjamin Bonneville wrote, “From the summit shoots up a shaft or column, about one hundred and twenty feet in height, from which it derives its name.”


Forty-niner David Cosad used the centuries-old method of measuring his shadow against the rock’s to come up with a figure of 360 feet from the base to the top.


Captain Eugene Ware wrote, “We estimated the height of the chimney itself to be eighty-five feet.  Elston said that it was the belief of the trappers that during the last fifteen years it had crumbled down from the top about thirty-five feet.”


The United States Geological Survey, using scientific instruments, calculated the elevation

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History Nebraska was founded in 1878 as the Nebraska State Historical Society by citizens who recognized Nebraska was going through great changes and they sought to record the stories of both indigenous and immigrant peoples. It was designated a state institution and began receiving funds from the legislature in 1883. Legislation in 1994 changed History Nebraska from a state institution to a state agency. The division is headed by Interim Director and CEO Jill Dolberg. They are assisted by an administrative staff responsible for financial and personnel functions, museum store services, security, and facilities maintenance for History Nebraska.
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