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Winslow

Dodge County

Winslow was created as a station on the Burlington line that paralleled the FE&MVR's route along the Elkhorn Valley, crossing it at the intersection of the old Mormon Trail, and then proceeded north to Sioux City. Hooper, it has remained one of Nebraska's smaller towns.
Downtown Winslow, 1987. [Darnell]

The first homesteads in this area were recorded in 1864 by European immigrants, primarily Germans. The relatively close proximity to markets was enhanced when the Fremont, Elkhorn & Missouri Valley Railroad was completed through the county in 1871.

The development of a second railroad that paralleled the FE&MVR along this portion of the Elkhorn River Valley was the reason that our town was created. On December 1, 1895, the Sioux City & Ashland Development Company chose a spot nine miles from Uehling for a station to serve the line being constructed between those two towns. It was given the name "Winslow," the meaning or origin of which is unknown.

In typical railroad-town fashion, the village grew rapidly and was incorporated May 28, 1909. A list of businesses that paid an "occupation tax" to operate in Winslow in 1910 includes: Weitkamp's hardware & furniture, a cement and block company, Kaufman Drug Store, Bullock Hotel, a bank; Speilburg General Merchandise & Elevator, Nebraska-Iowa Grain Company, Henry Kuss Implement, Brankert General Merchandise, Gately Blacksmith, Benninger Millinery Store, Ladd's Pool Hall & Barber Shop, and the Thomson Saloon.

A special election was held in 1928 to construct a waterworks system to be owned and operated by the village at a cost of $12,000. Results tallied 35 votes for, and 30 against, so the issue failed to meet the required 60 percent majority. Another election was held in 1929 and this time the issue passed. A tower, constructed by Omaha Steel Works, was erected on a part of a lot that the village purchased from Henry Schmidt for $100. That tower is still in use and is periodically cleaned and painted inside and out.

Winslow District 85 formed in 1908 when the patrons of Districts 43 and 20 voted to form a new district from the north part of those two entities. The school closed in 1977, at which time Winslow became part of District 26 of Hooper. The building was remodeled by Mike and Marie Williams into a family home. A 1938 teacher's contract and some bills from a Winslow hardware store were found during the remodeling.

The Winslow Post Office was established in 1895. Over the years, the community has been served by Zephaniah Berlin, William Kaufman, Otto Marks, Art Swartz, Evelyn Hansen, and Mary Darnell.

At one time there were two churches in Winslow: St.Paul's Lutheran Church, which opened in the early 1920s and was located on the Charles Haase property, and Zion's Evangelical Church, dedicated in 1925, that now stands vacant.

The Winslow Fire Company organized in 1911 with 22 members. The meetings were held in the city hall, which also housed the jail. The name was changed, first to Winslow Fire Department, and then, to Winslow Rural Fire District, with a current volunteer force of 24 members. A new fire station was completed in 1975 on the site of the Lallman store. A fire truck with a 12,000 gallon capacity was also purchased that year. In 1977 a rescue ambulance was added. Loren Hagerbaumer currently serves as fire chief. Officers are Keith Krohn, president, Tom Geisler, vice president, and Dan Wobken, secretary-treasurer.

The firemen hold an annual Christmas party, which draws a large crowd from the surrounding towns. Annual money-making projects, to raise money for the building and equipment, include; a New Year's Eve dance, card parties, blue rock shoots, auctions, and benefit suppers.

According to census reports, Winslow's population peaked in 1920 with a total of 275. Today the population is about 135, and includes 45 households. The present businesses are Farmers Co-op, Reach-Out's Tavern, Shirley's Bar, Jan's Store and Filling Station (formerly Samuelson's), and the post office. The Burlington Northern Railroad now operates the line through town.

The village board includes Chairman Robert Jenson, and trustees, Arlan Panning, Edwin Wellman, Robert Bechtel, and Mary Darnell.

By Mary M. Darnell, Box 186, Winslow, NE 68072.

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL: History of Dodge & Washington Counties, Nebraska, Volume I, Wm. Busse and Thoman T. Osterman, 1921; Dodge County Superintendent's Office, Village of Winslow records, and Winslow RFD records.