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Hamilton County

HISTORY
Mormons formed a colony as early as 1846. The first settlements were in 1866. Organized as Hamilton County in 1870, named for Alexander Hamilton. Aurora is the county seat.
 
COURTHOUSE
Hamilton County Clerk/Election Commissioner/Register of Deeds
1111 13th St Suite 1
Aurora, NE  68818-2017
402-694-3443     Fax 402-694-2396
Monday thru Friday 8:00 am to 5:00 pm excluding holidays
 
Hamilton County Clerk of District Court
P O Box 201 (mail)
1111 13th St (physical)
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-3533     Fax 402-694-2250
 
HAMILTON COUNTY PLACE NAMES
 
Early day post offices were often located in homes on the prairie.  The surrounding area became known by the name of the post office.  Most of those early communities never developed beyond a single building, a combination post office, small store and residence. 
 
Alvin               Post office, name changed from Hamilton in January 1876, discontinued in February 1888. Located north of Giltner.   Benjamin Abbott was the postmaster. 
 
Aurora           Peak population (2010) 4,479.  Post office name changed from Spafford’s Grove in May 1872.  Aurora was elected county seat in an election with Orville City in January 1876.  The railroad reached Aurora in 1879.  Early churches included a Baptist church was organized in 1871, Congregational in 1872, Presbyterian in 1873, Catholic in 1875, Methodist in 1875 and German Evangelical in 1879. 
 
Avon               Post office established in August 1875, name changed to Marquette in December 1881.  Located in Section 21, South Platte Precinct. 
 
Beaver             A precinct in east-central Hamilton County bordering York County. 
 
Bluff               A precinct in northeast Hamilton County ordering Polk and Merrick  Counties. 
 
Briggs Ranch A stop on the Old Fort Kearney Trail, established by J. T. Briggs in Section 26, South Platte Precinct in 1871. 
 
Bromfield        Post office name changed from Huntington in February 1887 and changed to Giltner in September 1895.  Town platted in 1886. 
 
Buckeye          Post office established in December 1876, discontinued in April 1884.
 
Bunker Hill    Post office established in June 1876, discontinued in December 1881.
 
Case                Post office established in February 1883, discontinued in February 1887.  Thomas Case was the postmaster.  Located in Section 22, Scoville Precinct.
 
Cedar Valley  Post office established in June 1874, discontinued in April 1880.
 
Curry             A former community named for G. W. Curry a miller of Aurora.
 
Deep Well       A precinct in western Hamilton County bordering Hall County. 
 
Deep Well Ranch      A stopping place for early day freighters on the Oregon Trail established by John Harris and Alfred Blue in 1862 near the Beaver Creek in Section 32, Hamilton Precinct.                      
 
Farmers Valley          Post office established in August 1869, name changed to Farmvale in November 1894.  Was located in Section 24, Farmers Valley Precinct.  Also a precinct in southeast Hamilton County bordering York and Clay counties. 
 
Farmers Valley Mill  A mill built by John and Asa Martin  on the south bank of the Blue River in Section 25, Farmers Valley Precinct in 1880.  The mill closed in 1940.
 
Farmvale        Post office name changed from Farmers Valley in November 1894, discontinued in December 1895. 
 
Giltner            Peak population (1910) 550.  Town platted in 1886.  Post office name changed from Bromfield in September 1895.  Located in Section 6, Union Precinct.  A Presbyterian church was organized in 1874, Methodist in 1885, Christian in 1898 and Catholic in 1901. 
 
Glover             Post office established in April 1879, discontinued February 1880. 
 
Grant              A precinct in central Hamilton County north of Aurora. 
 
Hamilton        Post office established in February 1874, name changed to Alvin in January 1876.  Located in Section 10, Aurora Precinct. 
 
Hampton        Peak population (1880) 500.  Post office established February 1880.  Town platted by the Burlington railroad in 1879 and originally named Murray.  Located in Section 33, Valley Precinct. Christian and Methodist churches were organized in 1885. 
 
Hordville        Post office name changed from Stark in 1907.  It was the last town platted in Hamilton County.    Friedham Lutheran Church was established in 1880, and a Baptist church in 1878.
 
Huntington     Early name for Bromfield, later changed to Giltner. 
 
Kronborg       Community east of Marquette in Otis Precinct. 
 
Leonard         Post office established in January 1880, discontinued in December 1885. 
 
Lerton                        Post office name changed from Linden in May 1875, moved to Bromfield in 1887. 
 
Lincoln Valley           Post office established November 1872, name changed to Saint Joe in November 1878.  Post office was located in the farm home of Charles Tompkins. 
 
Linden            Post office established in January 1874, name changed to Lerton in 1875. 
 
Marquette      Peak population (1930) 308.  Post office name changed from Avon in December 1881.  Town platted by the Burlington railroad in 1882.  Located in South Platte Precinct.  A Methodist church was organized in 1873, Presbyterian in 1875, Christian in 1882. 
 
Millspaw Ranch        The first ranch in Hamilton County and a stop for freighters on the Mormon Trail, named for David Millspaw in 1861.  Located in Section 11, beaver Precinct. 
 
Miramichi      Post office established in February 1874, discontinued in November 1877.
 
Monroe           A Precinct in northwest Hamilton County bordering the Platte River and Merrick County. 
 
Murphy          Post office established in April 1912, discontinued in 1943.  Located in Section 33, Monroe Precinct. 
 
Orville             A precinct in south-central Hamilton County bordering Clay County. 
 
Orville City    Post office name changed from Verona in December 1872, discontinued in January 1880.  Orville Wescott was a son of J. D. Wescott the first postmaster.  The first Hamilton county courthouse was located here in May 1872 but lost to Aurora in an 1876 election.  Was located in Section 22, Orville Precinct.  The town site later became the location of the Hamilton County Poor Farm. 
 
Otis                 Post office established in October 1873, discontinued in April 1889.  J. W. Otis was postmaster.  Located in Section 8, Otis Precinct.  Also a precinct in northeast Hamilton County bordering York County. 
 
Overland        A station on the Burlington Railroad.
 
Penn               Post office established in April 1895, discontinued in 1896.
 
Phillips            Peak population (1980) 405.  Post office name changed from Phillips Station in April 1895.  Located in Section 27, Phillips Precinct.  Town platted in 1884 by the Burlington railroad.  A Methodist church was organized in 1884and Baptist in 1889. 
Also a precinct in western Hamilton County bordering the Platte River and Merrick County. 
 
Phillips Station           Post office established in May 1884, name changed to Phillips. 
 
Prairie Camp      A relay stage station on the Overland Trail located six miles west of Millspaw Ranch established in 1863.  Located in Section 17, Beaver Precinct near the south bank of Beaver Creek.   Also known as “Dirty Shirt Camp.”
 
Primrose         Post office established in September 1881, discontinued in November 1882. 
 
Rock               Post office established in January 1879, discontinued in October 1881.
 
Saint Joe         Peak population (1880) 32.  Post office established in November 1878, discontinued in October 1885.  Platted in 1881 by Joe Skelton.  Buildings moved to Phillips when the town was bypassed by the railroad.  Located in Deepwell Precinct.
 
Sandburg       Former locality in Hamilton County.
 
Scoville           A precinct in southwest Hamilton County bordering Clay and Hall counties. 
 
Seaton             Post office established in March 1884, discontinued in February 1887.  Robert Seaton was postmaster.  Located southeast of Giltner.
 
Shiloh             Post office established in May 1876, discontinued in May 1889.  Located in Section 10, Monroe Precinct.
 
Spafford’s Grove      Post office established in April 1871, name changed to Aurora in May 1872.  Silvester W. Spafford was postmaster. 
 
Stark               Post office established in October 1887, discontinued in October 1907.  Some buildings were moved to Hordville.  Located in Section 23, Bluff Precinct.
 
Stockham       Peak population (1920) 239.  Post office established in July 1876, discontinued in 1976.   Joseph Stockham was first postmaster. A Presbyterian church organized in 1874, Methodist in 1880, German Lutheran in 1887, Presbyterian in 1889.   The school closed in 1972.  Located in Section 25, Orville Precinct. 
 
South Platte   A precinct in northern Hamilton county bordering the Platte River and Merrick County. 
 
Traill               A CB&Q rural railroad station. 
 
Union              A precinct in south-central Hamilton County bordering Clay County. 
 
Valley             A Precinct in east-central Hamilton County bordering York County.
 
Verona           Post office established in December 1870, name changed to Orville City in December 1872. 
 
Williamsport  Post office established in May 1872, moved to Hampton in December 1879.  George W. Hiatt was postmaster.
 
CEMETERY LIST
 
Please go to Findagrave, Billion Graves or your favorite cemetery site for GPS, map and listings
 
Abrahams Cemetery, Hampton
Aurora Cemetery (with Catholic Section)
Bayview Cemetery, Hampton
Beaver Valley Cemetery, Hampton
Bluff Cemetery, Hordville
Case Cemetery
Farmers Valley Cemetery
Franklin Cemetery
Fridhem Lutheran Cemetery, Hordville
Friesen Cemetery, Henderson
George Cemetery, Hampton
George Western Cemetery, Marquette
Giltner Cemetery
Greenwood Cemetery, Giltner
Hampton Cemetery
Immanuel Lutheran Cemetery, Hordville
Lerton Cemetery, Giltner
Lincoln Valley Cemetery, Hampton
Lindale Cemetery, Hordville
Mamre Church Cemetery, Marquette
Mennonite Brethren Cemetery, Henderson
Monroe Evangelical Free Church Cemetery, Murphy
Mount Zion Cemetery, Hordville
North Blue Cemetery, Hordville
Norwegian Cemetery, Phillips
Phillips Cemetery
Pleasant View Cemetery, Aurora
Prairie Gem Cemetery, Aurora
Richland Cemetery, Marquette
St John’s Evangelical Lutheran Cemetery, Kronborg
St Joseph’s Catholic Cemetery, Giltner
Salem Cemetery
Salem Evangelical Cemetery
Seaton Cemetery
Siloa Cemetery
Stockham Cemetery
United Lutheran Cemetery
Youst Cemetery, Hampton
Zion Evanglical Lutheran Cemetery, Hampton
 
CHURCHES
List past and present churches in the county, location and contact information, and where records might be held
Assembly of God Church
1019 7th St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-3185
 
Baha’I Faith
1729 A St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2598
 
Countryside Bible Church
904 S W Rd
Hampton, NE  68843
402-725-3888
 
Evangelical Covenant Church
1009 1st St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-6191
 
Faith Community Church
812 12th St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-4077
 
First Christian Church
1015 L St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2521
 
First Lutheran Church
1304 N Hwy 14
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-5494
 
Fridhem Lutheran Church
315 Park Ln
Hordville, NE  68846
402-757-3385
 
Hordville Baptist Church
223 Main St
Hordville, NE 68846
402-757-3261
 
Mamre Evangelical Free Church
1804 E 25 Rd
Marquette, NE  68854
402-854-2213
 
Messiah Lutheran Church
415 S 18th St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2017
 
Monroe Evangelical Free Church
1001 W 18th Rd
Phillips, NE  68865
402-854-2212
 
Pleasant View Bible Church
307 Manor Dr
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2680
 
Presbyterian United Church of Christ Church
930 K St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2254
 
St John’s Lutheran Church, Kronborg
2174 N T Rd
Marquette, NE 68854
402-854-3380
 
St Joseph Catholic Church
209 N Derby Ave
Giltner, NE 68841
402-694-3427
 
St Mary’s Catholic Church
1420 9th St
Aurora, NE 68818
402-694-2455
 
St Peter Lutheran Church
381 H St
Hampton, NE  68843
402-725-3234
 
Seventh Day Adventist Church
1504 12th St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-6214
 
Stockham Community Church
401 Scott St
Stockham, NE  68818
402-737-3333
 
United Lutheran Church
812 1st St
Hampton, NE  68843
402-725-3291
 
United Methodist Church
1104 A St
Aurora, NE 68818
402-694-6471
 
Giltner United Methodist Church
418 N Derby Ave
Giltner, NE  68841
402-849-2820
 
Phillips United Methodist Church
414 Third St
Phillips, NE 68865
402-886-2415
 
Zion Lutheran Church
1511 N Y Rd
Hampton, NE  68843
402-725-3320
 
LiBRARIES
List of libraries in the county with location and contact information and possible holdings like county histories (if known)
Alice M Farr
1603 L St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2272     Fax 402-694-2273
 
 
FUNERAL HOMES
past and present with contact information and years of records available if known
Higby-McQuiston Funeral Home
1404 L St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2199
In operation under various names since 1889.
 
 
NEWSPAPERS
Present:
Aurora News-Register (current)
1320 K St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-2131     Fax 402-694-2133
 
Former newspapers:
Hamilton County Advocate, Democrat, Register, News, Independent
Hamiltonian
Aurora Sun, News, Republican
Republican-Register
Bromfield Gazette
Giltner Gazette
Hampton Reporter, Herald, Journal, Ledger, Record, Star, Times
Hordville Pride, Leader
Marquette Independent, News
Phillips Advertiser
 
SCHOOL RECORDS
List of present schools:
Aurora Public Schools
Giltner Public School
Hampton Public School
 
Formerly:
Marquette Consolidated School
Hordville Public School
 
 
SOCIETIES 
Historical or Genealogical societies with address, email address, phone number
Plainsman Museum & Hamilton County Historical Society
 
 
WEB SITES
Include any web sites for the county, including GenWeb, government, Facebook groups or pages, Twitter accounts, etc. Give name and link
Hamilton County, NE at Genealogy Trails - http://genealogytrails.com/neb/hamilton/
Hamilton County, NE at Cyndi’s List - https://www.cyndislist.com/us/ne/counties/hamilton/
Hamilton County, NE at Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness - https://www.raogk.org/nebraska-genealogy/hamilton-county/
Hamilton County, NE at Linkpendium - http://www.linkpendium.com/hamilton-ne-genealogy/
Hamilton County Cemeteries at Nebraska Gravestone Photo Project - http://nebraskagravestones.org/cemeteries.php?selected_cid=41
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Virtual Nebraska, Hamilton County - http://www.casde.unl.edu/history/index.php?county=hamilton
 
Online Books:
Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Adams, Clay, Hall and Hamilton Counties, at Family Search - https://dcms.lds.org/delivery/DeliveryManagerServlet?dps_pid=IE3996514&vid=FHD&vid=FHD
 
History of Hamilton and Clay Counties, Nebraska, at Internet Archives –
 
OTHER HINTS for Researching the County:
Plainsman Museum
210 W 16th St
Aurora, NE  68818
402-694-6531
Tuesday – Saturday 9 am to 4 pm