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Saunders County, NE

Saunders County

For many years, Saunders County had drawn people with its offer of a better life. The Otoe and Pawnee Indians followed the buffalo into this area and settled along its rivers and streams. Before the arrival of settlers, a Pawnee Indian village,
containing 50 or more lodges covering a four-block
area, was located in what is now the southeast part of
Wahoo. In the vicinities of Cedar Bluffs, Leshara, and Yutan there are other historic sites of early Pawnee and Otoe Indian villages.


The earliest settlers were predominantly Czech, German, and Scandinavians whose hard work, determination, and ingenuity turned their dreams into realities. The Ox-Bow Trail traversing across Saunders County is historically marked by one of the twin rocks that the Mormon travelers and other pioneers used as an identifying point along their journey west. In Ashland, built along the Ox-Bow Trail, the Beetison home is still in family ownership since its construction in 1874.



As the railroad came to the area, towns sprang up in the county with business, schools and churches to serve the area's growing needs. The Saunders County Historical Society invites you to relive the rich heritage of Saunders County at the museum in Wahoo, the county seat.


Explore Saunders County

St. Wenceslaus Catholic Church

The first group of Czech settlers to come to the vicinity of Wahoo arrived in August of 1874. These settlers, who were of the Catholic faith, had to travel 15 to 20 miles in order to attend mass. For three years these settlers traveled to Plasi, Fremont or Abie to attend services. Finally in 1877

Wahoo, NE Historic Churches

David Letterman Late Show

Wahoo is the Home Office of the Late Show with David Letterman.

To see Wahoo as part of the Late Show website, look for Wahoo at:

www.cbs.com/latenight/lateshow//

Wahoo, NE One Of A Kinds

Archie Hightshoe Animal Collection

Nestled among the storefronts of Ashland, Nebraska is Willow Point Gallery, the home of The Archie Hightshoe Big Game Collection, or as local people call it, "Home of the Bear." There, for the delight of all ages, over 30

Ashland, NE Museums

Wahoo Recreation Areas

The Wahoo Area Recreation Association operates a community recreation center (Civic Center) and senior center and has responsibility for maintaining the municipal outdoor pool and all Wahoo parks and

Wahoo, NE Recreation

Historic Driving Tour

Take your own personal tour down beautifully tree-lined streets, graced with lovely older homes and buildings. The Wahoo Chamber and Economic Development has printed a self-guided brochure listing 15

Wahoo, NE Tours

National Bank of Ashland - NHR

The two-story brick and stone commercial building, which was constructed in 1889 in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, was designed by the architectural firm of I. and I. Hodgson, Jr., with offices in Omaha and Portland, Oregon. Between 1889 and 1947

Ashland, NE National Register

Oak Creek Trailhead

A corridor once used by the Union Pacific Railroad, the Oak Creek Trail is now part of the American Discovery Trail route through Nebraska. The 12

Valparaiso, NE Trails

Valparaiso Library

The library occupies the building that originally housed the Oak Creek Valley Bank from 1907 to 1980

Valparaiso, NE Libraries

First Congregational Church

The First Congregational Church was organized at Eldred, 12 miles northeast of Wahoo. Rev. Mr. Giddings was the preacher for both Eldred and Wahoo. The organizational meeting was headed by Rev. J.E. Heaton and took place on May 28, 1871. In 1880, a church was erected on the southeast corner of 5

Wahoo, NE Historic Churches


Bethlehem Lutheran Church

The first Lutheran services ever conducted in Wahoo were in 1880. They were conducted by Rev. Nels Nordling, pastor of Edensburg church of Malmo and were held in the N.J. Anderson photography gallery. On December 25, 1883 the Swedes organized the present congregation. Lots 4, 5, and 6

Wahoo, NE Historic Churches

Saunders County Historical Society Museum

Experience Saunders County history through its complex of seven buildings and caboose on 5 acres of land.

The Main Building completed in 1994 and the newer Anderson-Nelson addition house displays and exhibits about Wahoo'

Wahoo, NE Museums

Explore Saunders County