Tag Archives: decatur nebraska

Even the Birdies in Siouxland like a Cool Day, Decatur, NE

28 Jun

After living a few years in the state or Louisiana and eventually returning to the Midwest after a couple more stops during my work career I can say I am not a big fan of hot summer days and the humidity that comes with it.

A robin sits on a fence in a park on a hot day in Decatur, NE Monday, June 15, 2020. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

While visiting Decatur, NE recently walking in the town’s park along the Missouri River I spied a robin sitting on a fence post as I approached a path and noticed its reluctance in taking flight. I guessed that even birds don’t always enjoy hot, muggy days and so I skirted the path a bit so as not to disturb the bird and then watched as it also seemed to relish a fresh breeze blowing, a short lived reprieve from the hot day. But sometimes any small favors are something to savor.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A robin sits still on a fence and enjoys the breeze on a hot day in a park in Decatur, NE Monday, June 15, 2020. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Learning Local History in Siouxland, Decatur, NE

22 Jul

One can find a lot of local history at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

It never amazes me that little gems can be found in places with a little bit of luck and curiosity. While out driving about in Siouxland one day I ventured over the Missiouri River into Nebraska and the community of Decatur. It prides itself being the second oldest settlement in the state, dating back to 1854, and incorporated in 1856. Information found says a little over 400 people live there. The nice part, besides being located next to the Missouri River is the community’s museum.

Jane Judt, upper right and Norma Williams , center right, greet visitors and tell them about the local history located at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. This month was about local sports history. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

One of the museum docents, Jane Judt, explained that theme of presentations is always changing every few months, so the information provided doesn’t get stale and which I would believe encourage locals to stop by and see what historical facts are being shared. When I visited the theme was sports with a variety of memorabilia displayed.

Jane Judt talks about the history of the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

An upstairs room decorated as a classroom at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

But the small museum also contains nuggets of information about the early settlement days and the people who relocated to this area as folk migrated to the west looking for a fresh start and an opportunity to improve their lives. Tales told over and over again in many small communities’ museums that are found throughout the U.S. It’s the story of immigrants and people looking for a better life, a tale that reflects  many who settled in the Siouxland region.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

A lot of local history can be found at the Decatur Museum in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

Exploring Small Siouxland Towns, Decatur, NE

4 Jul

A small shopping district in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Downtown Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

On a recent drive about Siouxland I crossed over the Missouri River into Nebraska near Onawa and visited the small community of Decatur, NE. Finding some online information one site purports that Decatur is the second oldest established community in Nebraska, forming in 1854 and incorporating in 1856. Pioneers settling the prairie and looking for a fresh start or just a different start from where they came. It’s a small community set in rolling hills and with a riverfront that I missed and have yet to explore.

But the community does have an urban legend from its early days and makes for a good tale about encouraging people to settle the area. Showing its sophisticated urban side post cards were evidently mailed out showing a trolley car operating in the small community. In the days before Photoshop, someone got creative in the darkroom and a legend was born.

The story of the trolly legend in Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

An exhibit about a myth that became reality in downtown Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

In the little park area a red telephone booth proudly stands holding various copies of books, a free standing little free library to share the joy of reading with those who happen to stop by.

A red telephone box is now a Lending Library destination in downtown Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

While the downtown wasn’t particularly hopping the day I stopped by I want to return and explore the surrounding area including a riverfront walk that I missed as I was leaving town. Maybe in the fall, hoping for some colorful foliage on the trees standing on the surrounding hilltops. It could be picture perfect with any special effects in the photographic department.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Downtown Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

Downtown Decatur, NE Saturday, June 8, 2019. (photo by Jerry L Mennenga©)

 

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