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 established the first post office in January 1868. About 1871 the post office was moved to the present-day town site where a flour mill had been built. During this decade many settlers arrived and Beaver Crossing grew and prospered. The town was incorporated in 1892. This area was well known for its artesian wells. The first one was discovered in 1895. Wells in this park poured fresh water into what was once the largest swimming pool in the state. Other wells supplied the Smiley Botanical Gardens on the southeast edge of town. In the 1930s goldfish and water lilies were raised there commercially in fifty ponds. Later, the demands of irrigation dropped the water table and the artesian wells went dry.