Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Fire and Wind

Another beautiful day in Nebraska but the morning started out with fog.

We saw an information sign by the outlet mall so drove in to see if we could find it.  It must have been an old sign because we couldn't find the information center.  There were maybe four or five stores in this "outlet mall".  We're never impressed with most outlet malls or malls in general.  
A visit to the Mayhew Cabin and John Brown's Cave sounded interesting so off to it we went.  Unfortunately, we didn't check the days and time.  It is not open until Thursday at noon.  

No problem we'll go find out something about Arbor. 
We took a ride through Nebraska City and saw some beautiful old homes.  The trees in this area were huge and I don't remember seeing any anywhere as large.  

As we were driving down the main street of town we saw a big "open" sign at the Nebraska City Museum of Firefighting. We walked inside and didn't find anybody.  After standing around for awhile and not finding anybody we left.  

  These trees are scattered throughout the town.  According to the signage there are 71 in Nebraska City.  As I was taking a picture a woman in the firehouse annex was standing in the doorway and asked if we wanted to take the Firefighting tour.  She walked us back over and asked if we wanted to do a self guided tour or she could give it.  Of course we wanted to have a guide.  What a wealth of knowledge she had.  Admission charge was $3.00
There was a Firefighter Museum in Kearney and we ended up running out of time there.  We were so glad we chose this one to visit instead.
Nebraska City is the oldest fire department in Nebraska which was established in 1856.

These were original leather buckets.

This was an 1890 hand pulled pumper.

Mike Bauer worked with the fire department for 67 years.  He was quite a character who was also a deputy.  

We were told that this still worked and was the highlight of the museum.  
The photo in the background shows this actual piece of equipment.
As our docent continued to tell us stories of the people and places in town we were amazed at her knowledge.  As it turned out one story about a fire and all the firefighters that were injured, her son was one of them.

We found it hard to leave this interesting place and guide.  She told us of interesting places in town to do and see.  One of her suggestions was to walk down the street a block and see the windmill museum which just opened in April of this year.  
 As we were entering the Kregel Windmill Factory there were three couples leaving.  They told us it was great!
Bill and I watched a short video as we were the only ones there.  It was almost eerie.  

According to the brochure "In Nebraska City, Nebraska a man named George F Kregel had begun producing windmills in a single story wood-frame factory building on Central Ave.  Both George Kregel and Arthur, his son who followed him in business, are gone now, but their factory remains largely untouched since the Kregels were building their Eli brand windmills.

Preserved to reflect a moment in time-the year 1939--the Kregel Windmill Factory Museum is the only surviving intact historic windmill factory known in the United States.  Within the structure visitors will find a time capsule of early twentieth century shop  type manufacturing.  The contents remain in place as if its employees had just stepped out for lunch."  
Kregel also patented a bee hive.

Bill and I had no idea how a water pumping windmill worked other than the wind blew it.  Our guide showed us how they worked and automatically stopped when the winds got too strong.  
 I mentioned the Ledgers books and the guide said they were the largest collection in Nebraska. They are all hand written.  

The guide said everything was left exactly as they found it. 
Bill liked the patch they did on this machine.  

This was a 10 foot windmill.

This is a non-working windmill across the street at City Hall.

This tree photo was taken in front of City Hall.
I thought this was a great idea.  This drop box was outside City Hall.  

We walked into the grocery next to Kregel's.  We were pleasantly surprised at the prices.  

There's a lot to see in this area so we decided to see if we could stay at this park longer.  It is one of the neatest well kept parks we've been to at a reasonable price.  I guess we're not the only ones to like it.  There's a Jayco Rally starting on Friday.  We can stay an extra day but our site is rented for Friday.  

Turtle Safely........



  1. I love those trees. Very unique looking. A windmill museum - that needs to go on my list.

    1. There's also a freighter's museum that won't be open while we're here.


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