During World War II, Nebraska was the site of several prisoner-of-war camps, which housed German and Italian soldiers.
Gage County, Nebraska, has a rich history that dates back to the time of Native American habitation. The area was first inhabited by tribes such as the Pawnee and Otoe-Missouria, who relied on the land for hunting and agriculture. However, with the arrival of European settlers in the mid-1800s, the landscape of Gage County began to change.

In 1854, Gage County was officially established and named after William D. Gage, a prominent attorney and politician. The county quickly attracted settlers due to the fertile soil and ample opportunities for farming. Small towns and communities began to emerge, with Beatrice becoming the county seat and the largest city in the area.

The late 19th century brought significant developments to Gage County. The construction of railroads in the area opened new markets for agricultural products, allowing the county's economy to thrive. The city of Beatrice became a hub for trade and commerce, attracting businesses and industries. Immigrants from various European countries settled in Gage County, bringing their cultural influence and adding to the area's diversity.

One significant event in Gage County's history occurred on December 1, 1958, when a devastating tornado hit Beatrice. Known as the "Beatrice Tornado," it caused widespread destruction, killing 21 people and injuring over 200. However, this tragedy brought the community together, and the city rebuilt and flourished in the following years.

Today, Gage County remains an important agricultural region in Nebraska, with a diverse economy that includes manufacturing, healthcare, and education. The county maintains its small-town charm while embracing modern developments and offering a high quality of life for its residents.

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

  • 1854: Gage County is established by the Nebraska Territorial Legislature.
  • 1857: The county's first settlement, Filley, is established.
  • 1864: The county seat is moved from Filley to Beatrice.
  • 1872: The Burlington and Missouri River Railroad reaches Beatrice, boosting economic growth.
  • 1873: The Gage County Courthouse, which still stands today, is completed.
  • 1883: The Nebraska School for the Deaf is established in Beatrice.
  • 1890: The Nebraska Odd Fellows' Home, a retirement home, is built in Beatrice.
  • 1926: The Veterans Memorial Hall is constructed in Beatrice to honor local veterans.
  • 1961: The Homestead National Monument of America is established in Gage County.
  • 1996: Beatrice hosts the National Orphan Train Complex, dedicated to the history of orphan trains.