Historical Marker in
Colfax County, Nebraska

Nebraska was admitted to the Union on March 1, 1867, becoming the 37th state in the United States.
Colfax County, Nebraska has a rich history that spans several centuries. The area that is now Colfax County was initially inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Pawnee and Omaha people. European settlement began in the mid-19th century when pioneers arrived, attracted by the fertile land and opportunities for farming and ranching.

The county's official establishment took place on February 15, 1869, when the Nebraska legislature passed an act creating Colfax County. It was named after Schuyler Colfax, who was the Vice President of the United States at that time. Early settlers faced challenges such as harsh weather conditions, limited transportation infrastructure, and conflicts with Native American tribes. The county's growth was further stimulated by the arrival of the Union Pacific Railroad in the 1870s, which facilitated trade and transportation.

Agriculture played a crucial role in the county's development, and farmers began cultivating a variety of crops, including corn, wheat, and soybeans. Alongside crop farming, livestock rearing, particularly cattle and swine, also became an important industry in Colfax County. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the county experienced a period of rapid population growth as more settlers arrived seeking opportunities in farming and related industries.

In the present day, Colfax County remains predominantly agricultural, but it has also diversified its economy with the addition of manufacturing and services sectors. The county is known for its strong sense of community and its annual events and festivals, such as the Colfax County Fair and Czech Days, which celebrate the cultural heritage of the area's early settlers. With its rich history, vibrant rural communities, and ongoing economic development, Colfax County continues to thrive and adapt to a changing world.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Colfax County, Nebraska.

  • 1869 - Colfax County is established, named after Schuyler Colfax, who was the Vice President of the United States at the time.
  • 1874 - The city of Schuyler is founded and becomes the county seat.
  • 1880s - The railroad is completed, connecting Schuyler to other parts of Nebraska and facilitating trade and transportation.
  • 1917 - The Schuyler Sugar Factory is established, becoming a significant economic driver for the county.
  • 1940s - The population of Colfax County experiences a significant increase due to the influx of immigrants, particularly Czechs and Germans.
  • 1965 - A tornado hits Schuyler, causing significant damage to the town and resulting in several fatalities.
  • 1980s - The manufacturing and agriculture sectors of Colfax County's economy experience growth and diversification.
  • 2008 - The Schuyler Central High School is built, serving as a modern educational facility for the county.