Winter Games

Although many of us may groan at the sight of winter’s first snowfall, when you’re a kid, it’s a whole different ballgame.  When those first flakes begin to fall, you hope for a snow day and begin to dream of all those fun winter sports and games.

January 10, 1953 “Saturday Evening Post” Cover by John P. Falter; 10645-104, John P. Falter Collection.


In my opinion, kids in Nebraska have it pretty good.  They get to partake in all those fun winter activities that depend on cold and snow.  Growing up on the west coast, ice skating and snow activities were mostly the stuff of dreams and Hollywood movies.  A measurable snowfall was a rare occurrence, but my sister and I made the best of it.  We “skated” around in our shoes on an occasional frozen deck or ditch, or made snow angels after an infrequent winter hail storm.

So in the hopes of making you feel a little less grumpy about the start of winter and perhaps a little  nostalgic, I thought you might enjoy seeing a few objects and images from the Nebraska History Museum’s collections.  Perhaps these will bring back a few memories and make you feel just a little excited about what winter has to offer.

-Laura Mooney, Museum Registrar


Pair of Kees, “Brownie” half-hockey ice skates. The F. D. Kees Manufacturing Company of Beatrice, Nebraska produced ice skates, roller skates, building hardware, corn huskers, and garden tools. John Sell of Lincoln owned these skates. 10873-3, Source: Alice Starnes.


Original Drawing by John P. Falter. 10645-3641, John P. Falter Collection.


Native American ice glider made of animal bones and feathers. This game was played by sliding the glider on ice. 4364-173, Charles Zimmerman Collection.


December 16, 1944 Saturday Evening Post Cover featuring the illustration “Night Skating” by John P. Falter. 10645-146, John P. Falter Collection.


Native American sled made of large animal rib bones that are covered with hide. It was probably used from a standing position and had reigns attached to it. 4364-105, Charles Zimmerman Collection.


Published December 2nd, 2010


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About History Nebraska
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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