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Spade Ranch - NHR (Ellsworth Vicinity)


category : National Register
Spade Ranch - NHR  (Ellsworth Vicinity) Spade Ranch is located in the Sandhills of northwestern Nebraska on a tract of land in Sheridan and Cherry counties. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the ranch includes numerous buildings and structures, including the log cookhouse built in 1879, bunk houses which were used by the hired hands; the 1889 horse barn; calving sheds; breaking pens; and various corral areas.


Bartlett Richards purchased the Spade Ranch from Bennett Irwin in 1888. Richards and Will Comstock, also involved in many of the ranch's affairs, were instrumental in recognizing the importance of the Sandhills a grazing land. When Teddy Roosevelt targeted western ranches for illegal fences and claims, the Spade Ranch was high on his list. Because of Richards' conviction for illegal fencing of public lands and because of his untimely death while serving a jail sentence, the vast Spade "empire" has become legend in the history of cattle ranching in the Great Plains region.



Address: 27 miles south of Gordon on Highway 27, then 5 miles southeast on paved ranch road

Come visit us in Gordon, Nebraska

Attractions and Upcoming Events

Willow Tree Festival

Held each year on the second weekend in September, this is a two day, outdoor event in the city park. The festival features a large variety of live professional entertainment on two stages and amateur entertainment on a third stage. Food and craft booths, childrens'

Gordon, NE Festivals

Scamahorn Museum

The Scamahorn Museum is the 1884

Gordon, NE Museums

Sheridan County Courthouse - NHR (Rushville)

Organized in 1885, Sheridan County named Rushville as its county seat in 1888. The county initially rented office space. In February 1904

Gordon, NE National Register

Pioneer Mural

The mural located in downtown Gordon created in 1991 expresses the pioneer growth of the area in the late 1800s and early 1900

Gordon, NE Arts

Mari Sandoz 1896-1966

The fears, the passions, and the distinctive speech of the Western Nebraska homesteader come alive in the writings of Mari Sandoz. She was born on her father's homestead on the Niobrara River in northwestern Nebraska, May 11, 1896

Gordon, NE Famous People

Things to do National Register near Gordon, NE

Camp Sheridan and Spotted Tail Indian Agency Site

In 1873 under the leadership of Spotted Tail, the Brule Sioux moved from their prior agency near Fort Randall, South Dakota, ...

Antioch Potash Plants - NHR (Antioch Vicinity)

Prior to World War I, the United States was importing nearly a million tons of potash annually from Germany for use as fertil...

Gourley's Opera House - NHR (Rushville)

The one-story, false-front building listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was constructed by Dave Gourle...