Marvin F. Kivett, shown here presenting a
prehistoric stone tool to Governor Victor Anderson in the late
1950s, directed the Society museum before becoming Society director
During Kivett's administration, the Society
extended its operations across the state and by 1980 was responsible
for twenty-seven structures and 225 acres of land.
Chimney Rock National Historic Site, Bayard
Thomas P. Kennard House/Nebraska Statehood
Neligh Mill State Historic Site, Neligh
Senator George W. Norris State Historic Site,
Neihardt's study at the John G. Neihardt State
Historic Site, Bancroft
Cather's childhood home, one of several structures
at the Willa Cather State Historic Site, Red Cloud
The reconstructed 1874 guardhouse and adjutant's
office at Fort Robinson, near Crawford
Courthouse and Jail Rocks, Bridgeport
The federal Historic Preservation Act of 1966
brought the Society new responsibilities when the legislature
designated it to administer the State Historic Preservation Office.
The office issued its first report on Nebraska's historic sites
Since 1987 historic building surveys have
been published for seventy Nebraska counties.
Publishing has always been an important Society
activity. In 1969 the Society published the award-winning Great
Platte River Road, by trail historian Merrill J. Mattes.
By the 1970s the Society had outgrown the
R Street building and began planning a new heritage center south
of the capitol.
Instead of funding construction of the heritage
center, the legislature in 1979 purchased the former Lincoln
Elks Club at Fifteenth and P streets as the new home for the
Society's museum. After renovation, the museum opened to the
public in the fall of 1983. Other Society activities remained
at 1500 R Street.
Rendering by Robert Hanna,
for the Clark Enersen Partners, Lincoln.