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Kool-Aid's Beginning


category : One Of A Kinds
Kool-Aid's Beginning "Mother would bring home some of the soft drink powder that Edwin was experimenting with and my father didn't know if he wanted to drink that powder, sugar, and water mixture!" - A partial reprint from the booklet Hendley Nebraska Centennial.Little did the inhabitants in the village of Hendley, located six miles west of Beaver City, even in their wildest dreams know that the "Dry Goods Box Factory" as they called one of Edwin Perkins' ventures, and the mixing of concoctions would turn into such a large business.

The D.M. Perkins family moved from a farm south of Precept to Hendley in 1899. While in Hendley, he was engaged in the general merchandise business. He was to remain there until 1920 at which time he moved to Hastings, Nebraska. One of his children, Edwin, a boy with a lot of imagination, ingenuity and ambition, was to become very successful with a soft drink powder that was call Kool-Aid.

About 1900 when Edwin was 11 years old, he read an advertisement which fired his imagination. The ad urged the reader to "Be a manufacturer, Mixer's Guide tells how, Write today." His mother soon found her kitchen utensils scented up with perfumes, flavoring extracts, medicine and other mysterious concoctions of a juvenile experimental laboratory operator.

The working with experiments took most of the income that he made from his various business enterprises and he became the editor of The Hendley Dephic in 1909 and was later appointed Postmaster of Hendley in 1914 and served until 1918. During this time he married Kitty Shoemaker. In the 1920s, they and his parents moved to Hastings, Nebraska. Later the family moved to Chicago in 1931.


Come visit us in Beaver City, Nebraska

Attractions and Upcoming Events

First Presbyterian Church

Since the beginning, the Beaver City First Presbyterian Church has been a significant part of the community. Being the first church organized in the county, it has influenced the other churches in the area. It all began in the days of the wild, wild west in the year 1874. The first "church"

Beaver City, NE Historic Churches

G.W. Shafer & Son, General Merchandise

In 1910, on the square in Beaver City, George Washington Shafer opened what his family lovingly calls, "the first Wal-Mart," G.W. Shafer's. "Grandpa Shafer was the first Wal-Mart," said Jean Shafer of Beaver City. "He sold everything ... absolutely everything."

Beaver City, NE Historic Buildings


First United Methodist Church

Welcome to Beaver City's First United Methodist Church. Enjoy the chimes coming from the bell tower on Sunday mornings immediately before and after the worship service. Feast your eyes on the magnificent stained glass windows of the church.

Beaver City, NE Historic Buildings

Furnas County Wildlife Management Areas

Burton's Bend WMA - Along the Republican River Valley 90 acres of pasture land are maintained throughout the year to provide excellent hunting ground for common game birds. Oxford WMA

Beaver City, NE Wildlife Refuges

Things to do One Of A Kinds near Beaver City, NE