“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Milford in Seward County, Nebraska — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)

The Big Blue River

The Big Blue River Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, September 23, 2014
1. The Big Blue River Marker
Inscription. 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 freighting outfits, which crossed the river several miles south of here. Road Ranches were soon established along the trail, and scattered settlement began shortly thereafter. The Big Blue River played an important role in the history of the area and provided the necessary power for numerous water mills used in grinding grain for pioneer farmers. In the early years of the 20th Century, its waters provided energy for the first primitive electric plants. While spring floods are common in the area damage is usually minimal due in part to the limited drainage of the river. This pleasant, rural valley is only twenty miles west of Lincoln, the state capital of Nebraska. Those traveling east will soon see Nebraska's Capitol, the "Tower of the Plains," designed by Bertram Goodhue and recognized as one of the architectural masterpieces of the world. Little more than a cluster of homes on the prairie when chosen as the state capital in 1867, Lincoln has developed into a major Nebraska cultural and population center.
Erected by Department of Roads and Nebraska
The Big Blue River Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Kirchner, September 23, 2014
2. The Big Blue River Marker
State Historical Society. (Marker Number 180.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Nebraska State Historical Society marker series.
Location. 40° 49.282′ N, 97° 3.646′ W. Marker is near Milford, Nebraska, in Seward County. Marker can be reached from Interstate 80 at milepost 380.5, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in the east bound rest area. Marker is in this post office area: Milford NE 68405, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Purple Heart Trail (a few steps from this marker); Tall Grass Prairie (a few steps from this marker); Historic Milford (approx. 3.4 miles away); Plum Creek Prairie Historic Site (approx. 5.8 miles away); Seward, 4th of July City (approx. 6.3 miles away); PFC Charley Havlat (approx. 12.6 miles away); Gates College (approx. 14.9 miles away); Doane College (approx. 14.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Milford.
Categories. Waterways & Vessels
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 16, 2014, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 336 times since then and 18 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on October 16, 2014, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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