Online Encyclopedia

LINCOLN

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V16, Page 712 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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LINCOLN, a city of S.E. Nebraska, U.S.A., county-seat of Lancaster county and capital of the state. Pop. (1900) 40,169 (5297 being foreign-born); (1910 census) 43,973. It is served by the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy, the Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific, the Union Pacific, the Missouri Pacific and the Chicago & North-Western railways. Lincoln is one of the most attractive residential cities of the Middle West. Salt Creek, an affluent of the Platte river, skirts the city. On this side the city has repeatedly suffered from floods. The principal buildings include a state capitol (built 1883-1889); a city-hall, formerly the U.S. government building (1874-1879); a county court-house; a federal building (1904-1906); a Carnegie library (1902); a hospital for crippled children (1905) and a home for the friendless, both supoorted by the state; a state penitentiary and asylum for the insane, both in the suburbs; and the university of Nebraska. In the suburbs there are three denominational schools, the Nebraska Wesleyan University (Methodist Episcopal, 1888) at University Place; Union College (Seventh Day Adventists, 1891) at College View; and Cotner University (Disciples of Christ, 1889, incorporated as the Nebraska Christian University) at Bethany. Just outside the city limits are the state fair grounds, where a state fair is held annually. Lincoln is the see of a Roman Catholic bishopric. The surrounding country is a beautiful farming region, but its immediate W. environs are predominantly bare and desolate salt-basins. Lincoln's " factory " product increased from $2,763,484 in 1900 to $5;222,620 in 1905, or 89%, the product for 19o5 being 3.4% of the total for ,the state. The municipality owns and operates its electric-lighting plant and water-works. The salt-springs attracted the first permanent settlers to the site of Lincoln in 1856, and settlers and freighters came long distances to reduce the brine or to scrape up the dry-weather surface deposits. In 3886-1887 the state sank a test-well 2463 ft. deep, which discredited any hope of a great underground flow or deposit. Scarcely any use is made of the salt waters locally. Lancaster county was organized extra-legally in 1859, and under legislative act in 1864; Lancaster village was platted and became the county-seat in 1864 (never being incorporated); and in 1867, when it contained five or six houses, its site was selected for the state capital after a hard-fought struggle between different sections of the state (see NEBRASKA).' The new city was incorporated as Lincoln (and formally declared the county-seat by the legislature) in 1869, and was chartered for the first time as a city of the second class in 1871; since then its charter has been repeatedly altered. After 1887 it was a city of the first class, and after 1889 the only member of the highest subdivision in that class. After a " reform " political campaign, the ousting in 1887 of a corrupt police judge by the mayor and city council, in defiance of an injunction of a federal court, led to a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court, favourable to the city authorities and important in questions of American municipal government.
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