Utopian novels, touting plans to help the common person lead a "better life," were popular in the late 1800s. Henry Olerich, who moved to Omaha in 1902, wrote such works. His first, A Cityless & Countryless World, centered around a Martian who came to earth to teach earthlings how to create a paradise similar to the one on Mars. The paradise would include "communities" (rectangular tracts of land) on which "big houses" would be built, each accommodating a "family" of one thousand. Each member of the family would be required to work toward the greater good of the community. Although Olerich planned to develop one of his communities in Nebraska, he was never able to find the needed support. He continued to publish books promoting Utopian ideals until his death in 1927.
Sources: Nebraska State Historical Society Library Collection & RG1078
Henry Olerich's Utopian housing and farm plans
The Story of the World a Thousand Years Hence: An Interesting Scientific Forecast of the Important Progressive Changes That Will Likely Take Place On Our Earth in the Next Thousand Years, by Henry Olerich.
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