In 1877 the Ponca Tribe and Chief Standing Bear were forced from their Nebraska homeland along the Niobrara River to an Oklahoma reservation. Hardships followed them during the more than 500-mile trek. Standing Bear’s daughter Prairie Flower died…

Founded by J. L Davison in 1864 near the limestone ford where the Nebraska City to Fort Kearny "Steam Wagon Road" crossed the Blue River, Milford is the oldest town in Seward County, serving as the first county seat until 1871. Milford was home to…

On January 2, 1863, Robert T. Gale filed the first homestead in Seward County, then "Greene County." A surveyor, he chose an irregular tract along Plum Creek that provided shelter from the north winds and fresh spring water year-round. Robert and…

This millstone is believed to be from the gristmill built by William Smith in 1871 on the Big Blue River south of Beaver Crossing. W. J. Thompson took over the mill in 1873, and it continued to operate until about 1917. Gristmills were an essential…

The original site of Beaver Crossing was located about three miles to the northwest. Here a trail from Nebraska City to Fort Kearny crossed Beaver Creek. John Leonard and Daniel Millspaugh were the first settlers in this area in 1862. Roland Reed…

Since 1868, Seward has, with but few interruptions, sponsored a yearly 4th of July celebration which has gained national attention. This square, the original site of the festival, is today its focal point. Special trains once brought revelers here on…

Except for the occasional Indian or white hunting parties, the scenic valley of the Big Blue River was seldom visited prior to 1860. The establishment of the Nebraska City-Fort Kearny Cutoff in 1861 brought through the region thousands of overland…

This rest site is near the center of Nebraska's tall-grass prairie on the eastern edge of the hunting grounds once used by the Pawnee Indians. Nebraska's largest tribe, the Pawnee located villages on major area streams, including the Blue, Loup, and…