Historic Railroad Map of Nebraska - 1889

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Railway Map of Nebraska issued by State Board of Transportation, 1889.

Nebraska earned statehood in 1867 and the capital was moved from its original location, at Omaha, to Lancaster because of its central location. Lancaster was renamed Lincoln at that time in honor of President Lincoln's recent assassination.

Nebraska drew many settlers in the 1870's and 1880's as railroads expanded across the state. Nebraska railroads were well funded during this period.

The Burlington & Missouri River Railroad was constructed westward from Plattsmouth beginning in the 1850's. Plattsmouth’s location along the Mississippi River was essential to the railroad’s success. Mississippi steamers were able to load and unload cargo and passengers at Plattsmouth easily.

An early advertisement of the railroad states:

"The Burlington & Missouri River R.R. Company of Nebraska own the alternate sections, in whole or in large part, in every township within the areas north of the Platte, and south of the Platte. These embrace 2,500,000 acres, of which over 1,000,000 acres are sold. The remainder comprising some of the finest lands in the west, are for sale on very long credit, very low interest, and at very low prices, with large discounts for improvements and for cash."

The Burlington & Missouri River extended west to Lincoln and on to Kearny where, beginning in 1872, it connected with the Union Pacific Railway.

That important link instilled much westward travel through Nebraska and much local settlement, as Homesteaders began vigorously settling the land parcels that were offered at little or no cost at all.

This map was published in 1889 by W.W. Alt. It shows township and county boundaries, drainage, cities and towns, and the clearly labeled railroad network of 1889 with distances between stations indicated.


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