What to See
The Village Green is arranged so that all of the original buildings can be seen with a minimal amount of walking.
- The B&M Railroad Depot, complete with two early locomotives. (Parents, great for pictures of the kids!)
- A Pony Express station where Buffalo Bill’s saddle rests in a glass case.
- The General Store, stocked with everything from button shoes and flintlock guns to calico and a glass cat on the cracker barrel to keep the mice away.
- An authentic pioneer sod house. Eleven acres of prairie sod make up the three foot thick walls. Clay “plastered” the walls.
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More than 10,000 items in this building showing the development of transportation, lighting, guns money, many other facets of life-arranged in chronological order Including the oldest internal combustion engine (1876 Otto) ‘and oldest jet airplane (1942-P59). One section is devoted to art and sculpture.
ELM CREEK FORT
The first log cabin in Webster County Nebraska, both as a dwelling and as a community fort against Indian attack, built in 1869, The interior is authentically furnished. An original Pony Express mailbox is on the wall.
THE PEOPLE’S STORE
Replica of a general merchandise store that served the Stamford, Nebraska area in pioneer days, completely stocked with by-gone items. Includes original Fort Kearney Post Office mailboxes and a glass cat on the cracker barrel.
BLOOMINGTON LAND OFFICE
Moved from its original location in Franklin County, Nebraska, this building actually served pioneers filing their homestead claims. It contains early maps, old land records and John N. Warp’s original homestead title.
The development of fire-fighting equipment from handcart to modern fire trucks are here. Also an outdoor jail made of strap iron and an early diesel powered city light plant.
From 1872 to 1882, during homesteading days, this was the western terminus of the B & M Railroad. Two early-day locomotives and a narrow gauge caboose are displayed in front of the depot. During restoration seven worn out floors were discovered, each on top of the other, in the depot.
An authentic rural school building of the late 19th and early 20th century, furnished with original desks, books, stove, water pail, dinner pails, outhouses, etc. Even Harold Warp’s Perfect Attendance Certificates.
Authentic replica of the “little old soddy on the plains,” completely furnished. Including trundle bed and ‘skatol.’
Houses fascinating collections of china, pottery, cut glass and precious keepsakes carried west i n covered wagons, including a sugar bowl owned by Abraham Lincoln with glazed pictures of his mother and grandmother.
Built in 1884 the first church in Minden, has the original pews, pulpit, organ, etc. (Thirty minute nondenominational Sunday Services still held during summer months.)
Oldest in the U.S., steam powered. Rides were only a nickel. The engineer would even let you blow the whistle.
Typical pioneer barn, moved from Warp homestead 9 miles south of Minden. (Harold Warp’s parents were good Christians, so the hayloft boards were laid rough side up, so young folks couldn’t have barn dances.)
HOMES AND SHOPS BUILDING
Twenty rooms of the past, showing kitchens, living rooms and bedrooms of each generation since 1830. Also music shop, doctors office, print shop drug store, barbershop, many others. Yarn spinning, weaving and broom making are demonstrated during the summer. Second floor has surprisingly low mail order prices on furniture at turn of century. Also Carl Curtis’ Senate Office 1954 to 1978.
ANTIQUE FARM MACHINERY BUILDING
265 feet long, houses complete evolution of plowing, cultivating, seeding, harvesting and threshing equipment. (including a huge combine of 1890, pulled by 30 horses.)
ANTIQUE TRACTOR AND TRUCK BUILDING
100 early farm tractors. Also, farm trucks, lawn mowers and gasoline engines. (Including a hot air engine and Dave Buick’s first gasoline engine.)
Originally built in Minden during the “horse and buggy days,” this huge two-story building houses saddles, harness, fly nets and horse drawn rigs galore. (including a complete harness shop and set of huge logging wheels.)
This bldg., 22,400 sq. ft., two stories, featuring antique Buicks, Cadillacs, Dodges, Chryslers, Oldsmobiles, etc., 100 cars in their order of development. Also an early house trailer and motor home.
CHEVROLETS AND OTHER CARS
Antique auto bldg. Two stories, 265 feet long. Featuring over 50 Chevrolets on first floor, including first Corvette and extinct cars on 2nd floor.
FORDS, STUDEBAKERS, MOTORCYCLES, SNOWMOBILES AND BICYCLES
Two stories, 265 feet long, housing over 50 Fords, Lincolns, Mercurys and Edsels on first floor. On second floor is the finest collection of antique motorcycles, bicycles, snowmobiles anywhere.
AGRICULTURAL BUILDING AND STEAM TRACTORS
This two-story building houses over 500 agricultural implements, in order of development, that helped build our vast agricultural economy. (including McCormick’s first reaper, John Deere’s first plow, and a “see-thru” bee-hive.)
Blacksmith forges items for sale during summer months. (See Eli Whitney’s turning lathe and an early line shaft on display.)
PONY EXPRESS BARN
Authentically reconstructed, with model horses and historic saddles. (Includes 20-mule team Borax wagon and items dug up at Fort Kearney.)
PONY EXPRESS STATION
Authentic log building, moved to Pioneer Village from Bridgeport, Nebraska, where it originally served as Pumpkinseed relay station to the Black Hills. (See Buffalo Bill’s saddle in a glass case.)
HOME APPLIANCE BUILDING
To make mother’s workday easier – it houses evolution of washing machines, stoves, refrigerators, bathtubs, etc. (including first “Franklin” stove 1744, and first “Kelvinator” refrigerator 1925.)
Absorbing collection of salt and pepper shakers, pipes, decanters, pens and pencils, buttons, hat pins, fans, canes, trivets, many other items.
A historic “Diner” where you can have a cup of coffee, ice cream, candy, soft drinks and sandwiches during the summer months.