Nebraska 1875


Nebraska 1875

Its Advantages, Resources, and Drawbacks

Edwin A. Curley
Introduction to the Bison Books Edition by Richard Edwards

438 pages
Illus., maps


January 2007


$27.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

Europeans who considered emigrating to the American frontier in the nineteenth century could find little information about the real conditions they would face. And most of what was available—the broadsides and advertisements of land companies, speculators, and promoters—was highly suspect. Edwin A. Curley’s 1875 account offered something different.

Edwin A. Curley was an English journalist writing for The Field: The Country Gentleman’s Newspaper, a London weekly, at a time when the advice to migrating British farmers and farm laborers was that they would find their best chances in Canada, New Zealand, and Australia, and that opportunities in the United States had somewhat dried up. Styling himself as special commissioner from The Field to the emigrant fields of North America, Curley arrived in America to report in person on conditions there. His weekly articles were skeptical, acerbic, and amusing but only modestly encouraging to emigrants. Then he arrived on the Great Plains, where he underwent an almost religious conversion, so excited was he at the exceptional possibilities he found there.

Curley wrote his book as a comprehensive guide to these opportunities, covering geography, surface geology, climate, land availability and prices, costs of food and farm equipment, and fruits and trees that might be grown in Nebraska. It contains several maps and illustrations, accounts of the success or failure of individual settlers, and specific reports on every Nebraska county.

Author Bio

Richard Edwards is a professor of economics and fellow in the Center for Great Plains Studies at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He has published ten books.

Also of Interest