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Arbor Lodge State Historical Park




Arbor Lodge State Historical Park
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General Information

Description - This information was provided by NEBRASKA GAME AND PARKS COMMISSION

This beautiful estate in Nebraska City was home to J. Sterling Morton, founder of Arbor Day. From its beginning in 1855 as a four-room frame house, the magnificent mansion grew to 52 rooms through several remodelings. Authentic furnishings grace the rooms, and displays capture the life and times of this exceptional man.

A collection of antique carriages and wagons are displayed in the carriage house, and a stroll through the beautifully landscaped grounds, formal rose garden and arboretum is a must. Picnicking is permitted on the area. Cider pressing and other old-time crafts are staged here on last two Sunday afternoons of September and the first two Sundays in October.

Carriage House: Built in 1901 for about $10 000 this structure housed the Morton coaches, carriages, and carriage horses On display are a Stanhope phaeton, a Vail phaeton, a rockaway, a sidebar runabout, the traditional surrey, and a Brougham used by President Grover Cleveland The collection also includes an Overland stage, purchased by Carl Morton.

Italian Terraced Garden: Part of Joy's 1903 addition, the garden was designed by a noted Boston architect named Manning. Gently curving brick walks guide the visitor along both levels of the cool, shaded rose garden Highlights include numerous flower and rose beds, as well as a sundial and pergola. Monument Square: Set in the east part of the park near the entrance is a bronze casting of the author of Arbor Day", J. Sterling Morton It was erected in 1905 and dedicated by President Cleveland. Standing in the foreground is a smaller bronze of the Greek goddess Daphne, who according to legend was turned into a laurel tree by her father to save her from the pursuit of Apollo.

Log Cabin: Just across the drive from Monument Square is a log house, built on October 2 2, 1890, as a memorial to the old settlers of the community by J. Sterling Morton and other members of the old Seniors Association It is typical of the early homes used by territorial settlers. Pine Grove: Originally planted by Morton in 1891 to prove to Governor Furnas that white pines would, indeed, grow in Nebraska, the stand was replanted in 1937 after the great drouth. The dense carpet of needles and cool shade make it a favorite area with visitors.

Tree Trail: A one-half mile tree trail winds through the original arboretum area planted by the Mortons The wood-chipped path, cool shaded benches, and labeled trees offer visitors both a pleasant and interesting experience The arboretum, which encompasses the entire 65 acres of the park, features over 250 varieties of trees and shrubs.

Family Plot: (Wyuka Cemetery)-Historic Wyuka Cemetery, site of the Morton family plot, is located at 19th Street and 6th CorSo, about 1 1/2 miles southeast of the park entrance The plot is easily recognized by its 20-foot, hand-hewn rock shaft, shaped like a tree trunk broken at the top.

Attractions - Water: Yes Modern Restroom: Yes Trails: Yes Hiking: 1 miles Picnicking: Yes Picnic Tables: 40 Grills: 7 Shelters: 1 Visitor Center: Yes Arbor Lodge Museum Hours: April 15 through Octover 20 - Daily 1 pm to 5 pm Remainder of year by scheduled appointments only Living history weekends (Arbor Day, Apple Jack Festifal) Hours will be 10 am to 4 pm Office on Site: Yes Arbor Lodge Museum Hours: April 15 through Octover 20 - Daily 1 pm to 5 pm Remainder of year by scheduled appointments only Living history weekends (Arbor Day, Apple Jack Festifal) Hours will be 10 am to 4 pm

Recreation - Picnicking is permitted on the area and there is a one-half mile tree trail.

Climate - Nebraska has a moderate climate with high humidity. The relative humidity in this state averages 70 percent throughout the year. Winter temperatures normally average between 20 and 45 degrees F. March brings warmer weather and temperatures above freezing for most of the month. Spring is in full swing by late April when temperatures often reach above 60 degrees F. Summer temperatures reach highs of 95 degrees F frequently, with warm weather continuing into mid September. Crisp fall weather truly begins in October when nighttime temperatures begin to dip into the low 40s. The wettest time of the year in this state is late spring through summer.

Location -

From Lincoln: Proceed on Highway 2, Go to Nebraska City exit. Exit and proceed east to Steinhart Park Road. At Steinhart Park Road take left (north) to 2nd Avenue. Turn Right on 2nd Avenue and go to entrance of park.

From Omaha: Take Highway 75. Exit at Nebraska Business 75. Go East on that Highway. Go to Centennial Avenue. Turn right. Go around the park, joining 2nd Avenue. Following 2nd Avenue and go to the entrance of the park.

From Omaha, I-29: Go I-29 south to Nebraska City exit. Take Highway 2 over the Missouri River bridge which becomes the J. Sterling Morton Beltway. Take the Beltway around to Nebraska City exit. Exit and proceed right (east) to Steinhart Park Road. At Steinhart Park Road. Go north to 2nd Avenue. Turn right on 2nd Avenue and go to entrance of park.


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More Information

Contact Information:
Arbor Lodge State Historical Park, PO Box 15 , Nebraska City, NEBRASKA, 68410-0015, Phone: (402) 873-7222
, Arbor.Lodge@ngpc.ne.gov

Additional Information:
Nebraska's Historic Sites -

Links:
Arbor Lodge State Historical Park - Official site of Arbor Lodge State Historical Park

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