Sioux County Newspaper digitization project

The West Nebraska Family Research & History Center has entered into an agreement with one of our out-of-state patrons to split the cost of digitizing all of the Sioux County newspapers that are currently microfilmed and held at the Nebraska State Historical Society in Lincoln.

Early in October we were contacted via our website from a lady who lives in Florida and was looking for digital copies of the early issues of the Harrison Sun newspapers.  It was explained to her that to the best of our knowledge none of the Sioux County newspapers had been digitized just yet, but I suggested we would look into the cost involved with getting them done.  The patron wrote back and basically said never-mind as she had received a bid from another company for around $125.00 per reel for digitization and she wasn't prepared to spend that much on the project.  I explained the Minatare History Book project and the bid we received at that time to digitize the Minatare newspapers and that I also felt we could possibly come close to that same bid amount.  The patron wrote back and said if we could get the digitization done at the Minatare newspaper quoted price she would pay for half of the project.  Low and behold, the bid came in at exactly what I expected and an agreement was made.

All of the Sioux County newspapers (44 reels), not just the Harrison Sun newspapers, have been sent to our digitization company and are currently being scanned.  We anticipate the scanning portion of the project to be completed by the end of the year and then we'll run the images though OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software to make them word searchable.  Once that's all done the files will be placed on our website in the Members Only area.

This is certainly an exciting development and one we are looking forward to being completed.  Project progress will be reported in subsequent newsletter issues.


Genealogy Roundtable Forum: Dec 2017

The West Nebraska Family Research & History Center conducts a monthly Genealogy Roundtable Forum on the third Saturday of each month at 1:30 pm. Topics vary in subject matter and length of presentation but are always followed up by a question & answer period. The programs are free and open to the public.



The Story of Pierre Jon Desmet
By: Gretchen Deter

Our most sincere gratitude goes out to Gretchen Deter for her very informative and well researched program on Pierre Jon Desmet, aka the Black Robe Priest, one of the American West’s greatest explorers, cartographers, Native American advocates, and missionary. He came from East Flanders in Belgium to America to dedicate is life to spreading Christianity to the western Native Americans and while doing so, he changed the West in a way that no other man ever did.

We would also like to thank Gretchen's daughter, Shelly, for her help in taking care of her mom's media/computer needs.


What's New:

The following items have been added to our collection and are located in the Carole Tucker Reading Room:

• The Ghost-Dance Religion and the Sioux Outbreak of 1890
          c1991 - by James Mooney - 1136 pgs

• An Eye for History: The Paintings of William Henry Jackson
          c1997 - by Dean Knudsen - 89 pgs



Contributions & Donations:

We wish to gratefully and publicly acknowledge the recent research material donations and/or financial contributions by the following individuals and/or organizations.  Their contributions and support is paramount to our success and we truly appreciate their generosity.

• Minatare History Book Committee

• Tom & Susan Perkins / Prairie Studios

 **The West Nebraska Family Research & History Center was incorporated in the state of Nebraska in 2003 as a not-for-profit, public genealogy and local history research library.  Funding provided primarily through donations**


Annual Gift Giving Appeal

Tis' the season for gift giving and like most not-for-profit organizations we cannot function without the generosity of both our staff and our patrons alike so once again we are requesting that you keep us in mind as you develop your gift giving list this holiday season.  Our greatest expense is mortgage and utility payments so we are constantly in fundraising mode for those items however we do have a number of special projects that need funding as well.  The January newsletter will outline some of our goals for the new year while soliciting ideas for new projects.  As always you are more than welcome to contact us anytime with any questions/comments/concerns regardless of the season.

Financial gifts may be made in person, by mail to the address below or by clicking on the contribute button which can be found in the sidebar on most every page of our website.

Additional contribution information can be found on our website at

Happy holidays to you and your family and thank you in advance for considering us in this gift giving season.


News & Events

The Nebraska State Genealogical Society will hold their 2018 conference and annual membership meeting on April 27th and 28th at the River's Edge Convention Center in Columbus, Nebraska.  Nationally known genealogical speaker, Judy Russell (The Legal Genealogist) will present five programs as outlined on the NSGS website, in addition, several other break-out sessions are planned.  To view the most current information about this event please visit the Nebraska State Genealogical Society's website at


R E M I N D E R !

Rebecca Winters Genealogical Society (RWGS)

The RWGS meets the second Wednesday of each month usually at the Lied Scottsbluff Public Library.  Newsletter items can be e-mail directly to newsletter editor and society secretary, Jeanie Knudtson at


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Family Tree
genealogy software.
Standard version is FREE