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Migrating sandhill cranes (Antigone canadensis) depart their overnight roosting area in the Platte River near Kearney, Nebraska, at dawn (2015).
Migrating sandhill cranes (Antigone canadensis) depart their overnight roosting area in the Platte River near Kearney, Nebraska, at dawn (2015).

The Flag of Nebraska

Nebraska (/nəˈbræskə/ nə-BRASS-kə) is a triply landlocked state in the Midwestern region of the United States. It borders South Dakota to the north; Iowa to the east and Missouri to the southeast, both across the Missouri River; Kansas to the south; Colorado to the southwest; and Wyoming to the west. Nebraska is the 16th largest state by land area, with just over 77,220 square miles (200,000 km2). With a population of over 1.9 million, it is the 37th most populous state and the 7th least densely populated. Its capital is Lincoln, and its most populous city is Omaha, which is on the Missouri River. Nebraska was admitted into the United States in 1867, two years after the end of the American Civil War. The Nebraska Legislature is unlike any other American legislature in that it is unicameral, and its members are elected without any official reference to political party affiliation.

Nebraska is composed of two major land regions: the Dissected Till Plains and the Great Plains. The Dissected Till Plains region consists of gently rolling hills and contains the state's largest cities, Omaha and Lincoln. The Great Plains region, occupying most of western Nebraska, is characterized by treeless prairie. Eastern Nebraska has a humid continental climate while western Nebraska is primarily semi-arid. The state has wide variations between winter and summer temperatures; the variations decrease in southern Nebraska. Violent thunderstorms and tornadoes occur primarily during spring and summer, and sometimes in autumn. Chinook wind tends to warm the state significantly in the winter and early spring.

Indigenous peoples, including Omaha, Missouria, Ponca, Pawnee, Otoe, and various branches of the Lakota (Sioux) tribes, lived in the region for thousands of years before European discovery and exploration. The state is crossed by many historic trails, including that of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. The completion of the Transcontinental Railroad through Nebraska and passage of the Homestead Acts led to rapid growth in the population of American settlers in the 1870s and 1880s and the development of a large agriculture sector for which the state is known to this day. (Full article...)

Stone monument about 3 feet high, on flat ground near wooded creek
Monument at Mud Springs Pony Express station site

The Battle of Mud Springs took place February 4–6, 1865, in Nebraska between the U.S. army and warriors of the Lakota Sioux, Cheyenne, and Arapaho tribes. It was part of a series of retaliations by the Native American alliance after the U.S. army committed the Sand Creek Massacre. The battle was inconclusive, although the Indians succeeded in capturing some Army horses and a herd of several hundred cattle.

Mud Springs is located 8 mi northwest of Dalton, Nebraska, and is today a National Historic Site. (Full article...)
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William Dayton Orr (March 15, 1935 – May 5, 2013) was an American insurance executive and author. The husband of former Nebraska Governor Kay A. Orr, he served as the state's first and only First Gentleman to date from 1987 to 1991. Orr's position as a state First Gentleman, an unusual political occupation for a man at the time, earned him national attention. In 1989, Orr published a popular cookbook, the First Gentleman's Cookbook, which sold thousands of copies nationwide. Orr's cookbook included recipes contributed by Nancy Reagan, Warren Buffett, Johnny Carson, and Katharine Hepburn. (Full article...)

Counties (clickable map)

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Largest cities

2014 Rank City 2016 Estimate[1] 2010 Census[2] Change County
1 Omaha 446,970 408,958 +9.29% Douglas
2 Lincoln 280,364 258,379 +8.51% Lancaster
3 Bellevue 53,505 50,137 +6.72% Sarpy
4 Grand Island 51,517 48,520 +6.18% Hall
5 Kearney 33,520 30,787 +8.88% Buffalo
6 Fremont 26,519 26,397 +0.46% Dodge
7 Hastings 24,991 24,907 +0.34% Adams
8 North Platte 24,110 24,733 −2.52% Lincoln
9 Norfolk 24,348 24,210 +0.57% Madison
10 Columbus 22,851 22,111 +3.35% Platte
11 Papillion 19,597 18,894 +3.72% Sarpy
12 La Vista 17,143 15,758 +8.79% Sarpy
13 Scottsbluff 14,883 15,039 −1.04% Scotts Bluff
14 South Sioux City 13,120 13,353 −1.74% Dakota
15 Beatrice 12,362 12,459 −0.78% Gage
See List of cities in Nebraska for a full list.


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  1. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2013". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 22 May 2015. Retrieved 16 July 2015.
  2. ^ "2010 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File". American FactFinder2. U.S. Census Bureau, 2010 Census. Retrieved 9 June 2015.[dead link]