National Historic Register Sites in Richardson County

This page added 07-23-01

Richardson County Courthouse


Mount Zion Brick Church

Gehling's Theater

As one of Nebraska's first eight counties established in 1854, Richardson is among the oldest in the state. Archer was initially selected as the county seat. In 1860 the county seat was moved to Falls City. A brick courthouse replaced the original wooden frame building ten years later. The courthouse served the county well until fire destroyed it on May 7, 1919. In July voters approved a levy to finance the construction of a new courthouse. Work began in 1923 and the Classical Revival-style courthouse was completed in 1925, with sandstone exterior, marble interior walls and stairs. Constructed in 1881, the Mount Zion Brick Church, located near the town of Barada, is significant as a superb example of the basic hall-type church, for its notable interpretation of the type in the Gothic Revival style, and for its substantial, solid masonry construction. Only two examples of the type, which has significant associations with early settlement and pioneering protestant congregations, are known for the Methodist Episcopal denomination in southeastern Nebraska. Mount Zion is the only extant example in the southeastern region that was built for a Methodist Episcopal congregation. Constructed in 1892-93 in Falls City by the Gehling family, owners of the local brewery, the three story brick building has a large opera house on the second level. The interior features a curved balcony and a huge proscenium arch, which fills the entire wall of the opera house. Old posters advertising silent movies remain on the walls backstage. The opera house hosted stars like Fanny Rice and such classics as "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and "Shepherd of the Hills."

John Holman House

The two-and-one-half-story brick house was built about 1893 by John Holman, a wealthy farmer and landowner in the Humboldt area. The residence, located in Humboldt, was purportedly furnished with furniture purchased by Holman at the Chicago World's Fair of 1893. The Queen Anne mansion features a three-story, engaged corner tower; wraparound porch with gingerbread; decorative brickwork and ornamental window hoods

Leary Site

The Leary Site is the principal "Oneota" site west of the Missouri River.  Oneota was a sophisticated Mississippian-like culture which flourished in Iowa, Wisconsin, and neighboring states from 1000 A.D. through the early historic period, about 1600-1700 A.D.  Oneota represents prehistoric ancestors of the Siouan-speaking historic tribes, and Leary probably was inhabited by people related to the Iowa, Oto, and Missouria. The Leary Site, near the present-day town of Rulo provides a unique opportunity to study the Oneota people at the western margin of their territory.



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