Beatrice

Beatrice Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle

Before automobiles and radios made the world a smaller place, it could be challenging for adults in rural areas to gain access to the kinds of cultural and educational opportunities that were common in large cities. The solution was the Chautauqua movement, which began in New York in the 1870s. By the 1880s, inter-state Chautauqua assemblies had reached Nebraska, bringing lectures, music, and other cultural programs.

How Shall We Make Beatrice Grow?

How does one transform a prairie town into a thriving cultural center? When a town desires to strengthen the moral fiber of its citizens, protect its young people from vice, and attract the “most desirable class of people” what route does it take? In the early 1870s, those were the questions that the people of Beatrice wanted to answer. Each of them had moved west with their own dreams and ambitions. Many of them held idealized visions of the healthy, thriving city that they intended to forge out of the prairie grass.

The Naming of Beatrice, Nebraska

On April 22, 1857, on board the steamer Hannibal anchored on the Missouri River, a small group of passengers met to form a settlement organization, which they named “The Nebraska Association.” One of the organization’s first orders of business was to form a “locating committee” charged to “explore Nebraska and select a townsite.” Nebraska Association, minute book (NSHS RG33</body></html>

Yearly memberships start at $32

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