Sherman County, NE


  • Land Area: 566 square miles
  • Population (2010): 3,152
  • County Seat: Loup City
  • Towns and Population (2010): Loup City- 1,029, Litchfield– 262, Ashton– 194, Rockville– 106, Hazard- 70. 
  • Public School Districts: Litchfield Public Schools, Loup City Public Schools.
    • Extracted from casde.unl.edu/history/counties/sherman

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Sherman county exemplifies the rich pioneer history of central Nebraska. Early settlement from the South was followed by a variety of ethnicities  from many of the states to the East. The area provided good natural resources including wood, water, clay, and excellent farmland. The county grew steadily until the Depression and the 1930s, at which time climate collapsed much of the local economy. Since then, Sherman County has grown back to provide a home to strong families and many businesses and farms. It still maintains its rural values and mores including hard work, religion, and a willingness to give to communities in the county. All of these features are instantly recognizable to Junk Jaunters, who invariably have great experiences meeting and negotiating with the colorful residents of Sherman County.

History, and the settlement of the County Seat in Loup City:

The idea of the settlement of the Middle Loup Valley, in what is now Sherman County, originated in Grand Island, in the winter of 1872-73, when a little party of less than a score of men, only a few of whom had families, entered the plan of making a settlement in what is now Loup City, and securing the early organization of the county. At the time of their arrival on the present site of Loup City, there was only one small log cabin, 18 X 24 feet in size, occupied by as many as fourteen persons. When the organization of the party was perfected, they selected Loup City as their location, and secured authority from the State government to form a county organization.

At the election on April 1, 1873, only thirteen votes were polled, most of which were by the officers elected. This little band of sturdy pioneers left Grand Island in the winter of l872-73 entering what was then wild and unsettled territory with hopes of making homes and carving out their fortunes. Soon after the organization of the county, bonds were voted for the building of bridges, county buildings and schoolhouses. The amount of this bonded indebtedness was large estimated at about $65,000.

During the severe snowstorm, commencing April 13, 1873, and lasting three days, there was considerable suffering in the small but growing colony. At one point the store, owned by Frank Ingram, had sixty men imprisoned for the three days of the storm. During the storm, about fifty horses perished in the creek or hollow, just south of the store. The incident gave the creek, on which Loup City is located, its name: Dead Horse Run.

The first school in the county was taught by Miss Susan S. Gilbert, at. Loup City, with twenty-five pupils in attendance. Indian scares were common in 1876. Though these rumors were without foundation, they aroused so much terror that a large number of the inhabitants left the county. In the spring of 1877, there was quite a large immigration to the county, engendering tri-weekly mail to Grand Island, and resulting in considerable travel to the Black Hills by this route.

Loup City has had its share of excitement, from the murder of a newspaper editor, to a murder/suicide committed by
a Sheriff — both before 1900. Later, in the “dirty thirties,” Loup City had a Communist Riot and developed a widely renowned cultural center called Jenner’s Park.

Villages of Litchfield, Ashton, Hazard, and Rockville — Sherman County

Litchfield, Nebraska was founded on May 20, 1886. The land was the feature that brought most of the settlers to Litchfield. There are three theories on how the town of Litchfield got its name. Litchfield may be based on the name of a railroad worker from Litchfield, CT, of settlers from Litchfield, MN, or that an early settler had the name of Litchfield. Families came from Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, and Vermont. There was no dominant ethnic group but elements of Dutch, Swiss, German, Norwegian, Scotch-Canadian, Irish, and English were all present.
Litchfield’s first building was a real estate offi ce. This was shortly followed by a Post Offi ce on June 19, 1886, and a railroad stop. The town grew rapidly after that to include a newspaper, businesses, schools and churches. The annual Old Settlers Picnic, held in July, still draws a large crowd.

Ashton was conceived as the Lincoln & Blackhills Railroad (later the B&MR) had stations at Farwell and Loup City and needed another stop midway between for the farmers along the line. It is said the site chosen was a prairie dog town not far from Oak Creek. The Lincoln Townsite Company platted the town, naming it “Ashton” for the hometown of John P. Taylor, from Illinois.

Even before rail service began in 1887, businesses were flourishing. There was a brickyard, lumber yard, real estate dealer, hotel, grain elevator, two general stores, and livery stables. The bank of Ashton began in 1888. That same year the school and post office were moved in from the German settlement of Zeven. Incorporation papers were filed on March 30th, 1889.

The original founders of the town were a blending of ethnic Europeans. When the railroad bypassed the village of Paplin, many Polish businessmen moved to Ashton, creating the preponderance of Poles, still evident today. Ashton continued to grow until the Depression in the 30s caused one of the two banks to fail, and several businesses to close. Train service was discontinued in 1985, and the tracks were removed the next year, so the “Second Chicago” remains a small Nebraska village. St. Francis Catholic Church continues to serve the community.

Rockville began with the arrival of a few families, establishing a post office in 1873, followed by a sod schoolhouse built in 1874. From these beginnings, Rockville was organized in 1886. Early homesteaders were colonial Americans of British and Anglo-Saxon descent. Then Germans settled south of the Middle Loup, Danes to the east, Bohemians and Czechs to the southwest, and the Poles to the northeast in the hills. 

When the Union Pacific Railroad built through the area in 1886, the town site was comprised of four sections of land. It is said that their primary purpose was to ensure incorporation so a license for a saloon could be attained. It was not long until there was one. In addition to the arrival of the railroad, a wooden bridge built over the Middle Loup River in 1886 also strongly influenced the growth of the town, connecting it along what is now Hwy 58 to Ravenna and larger communities to the South. After several weather washouts, major reconstruction began in 1972, which included a concrete bridge and realignment of the highway. The names Laona and Rockford were already taken, so “Rockville” was suggested, and as such the town was incorporated in 1887.

By the turn of the century, there were two grain elevators near the depot, which brought farmers to Rockville to sell their crops. St. Mary’s Catholic Church was built in 1909, followed by The Community Church organized in 1935 and served by ministers from Evangelical and Reformed, and Congregational churches. In 1968 it became the United Church of Christ, and it was rebuilt in 1982.

Hazard, on the Grand Island & Wyoming Central Railroad line, was initially established in 1886. Early pioneers of many nationalities and cultures who moved to this frontier area, lived in dugouts and sod houses, forming a strong community bond that bound them together as they lived through blizzards, tornadoes, hordes of grasshoppers, drought, and dust storms.

Hazard is believed to have gotten its name as a result of a dangerous, swampy area along the tracks at that location. The soft roadbed caused trains to slow down and mark their logs with the word “Hazard” as a caution to other engineers who might be unfamiliar with the route.

Churches and schools were very important to residents. The first school was made of sod and remained with some improvements until 1900, when a frame schoolhouse was built. Today Hazard has three churches: Methodist, Lutheran, and Catholic. The Evangelical Lutheran Church was organized as early as 1882, with services held in various farm homes around the area until the church was built. Although the town is classed as “a quiet farming community,” the citizens feel that Hazard is still alive and well.

Hazard earned worldwide fame in 1992 when Richard Marx recorded his hit song, “Hazard,” based on a fictitious murder.

*Produced in part by a grant from Sherman County Lodging Tax Committee
**Extracted from casde.unk.edu/history/counties/sherman

Make your 2020 Lodging plans Today!

motel_listInnkeepers across NEBRASKA’S JUNK JAUNT®” extended to you a hearty “WELCOME” and appreciate your early reservations.  There are numerous Motels, Bed & Breakfasts, Guest Houses and Campgrounds in the area.

Take advantage by making your 2020 JUNK JAUNT® 
Lodging plans today using the 

2019 Sponsored Lodging List

These supporting businesses have the perfect place for a good nights’ rest after a  ”Shop ’til You Drop” day.  Accommodations fill quickly, so make your reservations early. [Read more…]

Thedford, NE

Thedford, NE

Thedford is a thriving community of nearly 400 with a variety of businesses and entrepreneurs for the size of the population. Thedford, as the county seat, houses county. state and federal offices with four churches as well as K-12 schools. There are full service gas stations with convenience stores, a diesel repair shop, motels, lounges, a grocery store, lumber and hardware store, construction companies, a veterinary clinic, an art gallery, and newspaper office.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Thedford, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Thedford,_Nebraska_downtown_1

Bartlett, NE

Bartlett, NE

The village of Bartlett is the Wheeler county seat, with two courthouses.

The new courthouse was built partially underground while the old one is now the historical museum. Wheeler Central High School (Broncos) were the 2003 Class D2 Volleyball and 6-Man Football Nebraska state champions.

Stop by our ‘old courthouse’ to view “Silent Leather”, a life-sized bronze sculpture donated by Bartlett native, Herb Mignery. We hope you will enjoy a small piece of “Nebraska’s Good Life” with a stop at one of our businesses or one of our two parks, complete with restrooms and camper hookups

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Bartlett, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Bartlett-Silent-Leather-statue

Westerville, NE

Westerville, NE

No information for Westerville is available. [Read more…]

Sargent, NE

Sargent, NE

“Hot Link” http://www.sargentne.com

Sargent is the Chokecherry Capital of Nebraska. Our Chokecherry Jamboree is complete with Pit Spittin’ contests and held each June in connection with the close-by Comstock Windmill Festival.

Sargent, named in 1879, is nestled along the beautiful spring-fed Middle Loup River.

Between 1927 &1974 Sargent and Oscar’s Paladium was the dancing hot-spot of central Nebraska, when it hosted such greats as Guy Lombardo, Lawrence Welk, the Dorsey Brothers and other, world -famous, ‘big bands’. It’s still the place to be during Nebraska’s JUNK JAUNT®.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Sargent, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Loup City, NE

Loup City, NE

Built near the banks of the Middle Loup River, a sign reads, “Welcome to the ‘Polish Capital’ of Nebraska”.

“Polish Days” is celebrated the first weekend in June.

Sherman County Reservoir is 5 miles east of town and Bowman State Park is 1 mile west. Newly renovated Jenner’s Park, near downtown, is the site of historical Jenner House and Kuszak’s Log Cabin … a peaceful break in a busy day.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Loup City, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Comstock, NE

Comstock, NE

Comstock is a quiet and friendly community with school bus access to three schools, low taxes, all utilities available, best water with low arsenic, fresh air, paved roads to larger shopping centers, health care available in neighboring communities of Broken Bow, Ord and Sargent, scenic Middle Loup River with constant flow and public hunting and fishing grounds.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Comstock, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Boelus, NE

Boelus, NE

No information for Boelus is available. [Read more…]

Arcadia, NE

Arcadia, NE
“A Home to Come Home To”

Arcadia, population 359, is located on Hwy 70, near the Middle Loup River Established in 1885 and named by Postmaster Mrs. Samuel Hawthorne, Arcadia is a Greek word meaning “a region or scene of simple pleasure and quiet”

. We are a town of dedicated people. In 2005, we raised enough money to erect a Veteran’s Memorial Wall using engraved bricks, each honoring a veteran. This year we successfully undertook another large project, that of purchasing new playground equipment for the Arcadia Public School.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Arcadia, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Arcadia_Ne_downtoiwn

Arcadia, Nebraska: “A Home To Come Home To.”

Wolbach, NE

Wolbach, NE
“The Small Town with 7 Exits”

Welcome to Wolbach!

Known nationally for its 7 exits, this quaint little town of 300 is nestled in the Spring Creek Valley on the Greeley-Howard county line. Citizens and visitors alike enjoy all that the town has to offer–numerous businesses, a volunteer fire and rescue department, a swimming pool and tennis court, a campground with electrical hookups, picnic areas, a fishing pond, two churches, a post office, playgrounds, a school, and a beautiful athletic field.

The annual Memorial Day Bull Ride and Wolbach Days Celebration and Rodeo are special big events attended by people from across the state.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Wolbach, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Wolbach_Ne_downtown

“The Small Town with 7 Exits”

St. Paul, NE

St. Paul, NE

Raise your sights and watch for the big red balloon floating over St. Paul to mark the center of all the great sales of antiques, junk, jewelry, and more. Flowers, baseball museum & mural, Historical Village, good food and fun. Join us! [Read more…]

St. Libory, NE

St. Libory, NE

St. Libory was founded in 1878 by German settlers from St. Libory, Illinois, seeking a better fortune. At $4 per acre, ten acres was purchased from the Union Pacific Railroad for a Catholic parish, to be named Saint Libory after the home church.

In 1880 the town had 29 businesses and 2 churches. A few original buildings still stand today, and the population has grown to 300.

We are known far and wide for our “St. Libory Melons” plus the home grown fruits, veggies & pumpkins available at roadside stands throughout the season.a population of 30. By the early 1900’s.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of St. Libory, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

st-libory-helgoth-melons

St. Libory is known in the region for its fresh melon market.

Greeley, NE

Greeley, NE

Welcome to Greeley, where our courthouse is on the Nebraska Historical Building Registry.

The beautiful Veteran Memorial wall, dedicated in 2003, has been placed in front of the Greeley Co. Courthouse. This quiet community is located at the junction of U.S. Hwy 281 and Neb. Hwy 56, just 25 miles north of St. Paul, Nebr. Greeley is centrally located among many recreational areas, including the Calamus Reservoir, Davis Creek and the Cedar River.

The Greeley area is also rich with many historic buildings, artifacts and beautiful scenery. Hope to see you in Greeley during the JUNK JAUNT®.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Greeley, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Callaway, NE

Callaway, NE

Callaway is situated in the scenic Seven Valleys region of central Nebraska. Located about an hours drive northwest of Kearney or northeast of North Platte, the Village of Callaway boasts the smallest hospital in the state, recreational opportunities galore, a diverse agricultural economy, a healthy K-12 school system as well as a great preschool, and welcoming, friendly people

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Callaway, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

kite_flight_callaway

Visit Callaway Kite Flight website, held Labor Day weekend. 

Broken Bow, NE

Broken Bow, NE

Welcome to Broken Bow!!

This wonderful community is located in the center of scenic Highway 2. We have something for nearly everyone, with 126 acres of parks, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, ball diamonds, tennis facilities, fishing pond, picnic & camping facilities, a regional hospital and fine businesses. All this within 15 blocks of downtown, where our Park Square is “the center of it all”

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Broken Bow, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Kinkaider Brewing Co

Kinkaider Brewing Co
HOT LINKwww.KINKAIDERBREWING.com

  

Boneyard Creation Museum
HOT LINK:http://www.boneyardcreationmuseum.org/

Evans Clan Junk Classic

Evans Clan Junk Classic
HOT LINKwww.facebook.com/cstreetauction

Prairie Grounds Coffee House Gifts

Prairie Grounds Cafe and Gifts
HOT LINK: – www.facebook.com/prairiegroundscoffeehouse

The Grocery Kart  

The Grocery Kart
HOT LINK:www.gkbrokenbow.com

  Papa Shawn’s Concessions and Catering

Papa Shawn’s Concessions & Catering
HOT LINKwww.facebook.com/papashawnsconcessionsandcatering

Custer County Museum

Custer County Museum
HOT LINKwww.custercountymuseum.com

DQ Grill & Chill

DQ Grill & Chill
HOT LINK – www.facebook/dairyqueenbrokenbow

  Ortello Dale Home Decor & Gifts

Ortello Dale Home Decor & Gifts
HOT LINK – www.facebook.com/ortellodale

Broken Bow Legends Neighborhood  

Broken Bow Legends Neighborhood
HOT LINK – www.bblegends.net

Custer County Fairgrounds

Custer County Fairgrounds
HOT LINKwww.custercountyfair.org

The Antique Korner

The Antique Korner
HOT LINKwww.facebook.com/theantiquekorner

Triple Blessed Boutique

Triple Blessed Boutique
HOT LINK – www.shoptripleblessed.com

Cobblestone Hotel & Suites

Cobblestone Hotel & Suites
HOT LINKwww.staycobblestone.com

North Loup, NE

North Loup, NE
“The Popcorn Capital of Nebraska” 

In the late 1800’s most area farmers found that popcorn was a profitable crop to plant.

In 1901, North Loup businesses started giving Free Popcorn to their customers. One hundred four years later, during the annual “Pop Corn Days” festival, this custom is continued, with all the free popcorn you can eat while you enjoy the entertainment.

North Loup was founded in 1872, by Rev. Oscar Babcock and his hearty band of Seventh Day Baptist.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of North Loup, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

Arnold, NE

Arnold, NE

Arnold is a village in Custer County. The population was 597 at the 2010 census. The village was named for George Arnold, a pioneer settler.

The first Sandhills Open Road Challenge was held in Arnold, Nebraska, in August 2001. Thirty-four enthusiastic drivers came from 17 states to participate in the first event of its kind ever held in Nebraska. The event now sells out its grid of 120 each year on the first day of registration with scores eagerly anticipating being selected from the events waiting list.

Thousands of spectators from Custer County and surrounding communities throng to Arnold each year to watch the shootout, parade, road race, and the crowd favorite–the burnout contest. Drivers from more than 40 states and Canada enjoy unrivaled hospitality from local inhabitants who open their homes to lodge upwards of half of all drivers and navigators. As one driver proclaimed loudly at the 2008 SORC barbeque, “Nobody does it like Arnold!”

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Arnold, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List

The Sandhills Open Road Challenge is a 55-mile rally style open road race through the scenic Nebraska Sandhills. #SORC15 August 5-8, 2015

The Sandhills Open Road Challenge is a 55-mile rally style open road race through the scenic Nebraska Sandhills. #SORC15 August 5-8, 2015

Elyria, NE

Elyria, NE

No information for Elyria is available. [Read more…]

Elba, NE

Elba, NE

Elba is a quaint, friendly town nestled in the North Loup River Valley, where our elderly are rich in ethnic heritage. Our youth are our future and are proud of their heritage. Polish, Czech and Dane are some of our predominant nationalities.

February starts the year with a bang—–“The Kolache Shoot-Out” one of many events that celebrate our heritage. Our town is nestled in the entrance of the beautiful North Loup River Valley and surrounded by 3 lakes, all within an hours’ drive. At the information booth, located on the corner of Highway 11 and Pearl Street, you can pick up a JUNK JAUNT® Vendor Guide and a detailed map of Elba.

Click here to download Click here to download a printable map of Elba, NE

Click here to download All Central Setup Locations (may not include this town)
Click here to download All town Coordinator Names & email
Click here to download new12019 Sponsored Lodging List