20 (Suspicious Yet Mildly Useful) Facts About Nebraska
Unofficial Motto: "You Can Legally Drive 75 Here."

Dan Van Oss American States, Complete Columns, History Leave a Comment

If you’ve been dying to know where Kool-Aid and the Rueben sandwich came from, or that Blue Chalcedony is not just a great name for Prog Jazz band, read on.

1

Official Motto: “Equality before the law.”
Unofficial Motto: “You Can Legally Drive 75 Here.”

2

The goldenrod was declared the state flower on April 4, 1895 by 75 allergic and violently sneezing State Congressmen.

3

At one time, Nebraska was called “The Great American Desert”. Now it’s called “The Great American Desert With A Cabela’s In The Middle.”

4

The Lied Jungle in Omaha is the world’s largest indoor rain forest, irrigated with the tears of Nebraskans waiting for winter to be over.

5

Omaha, Nebraska is the birthplace of the Reuben Sandwich, the son of Earl and Edwina Sandwich.

6

Nebraska’s Ogalala aquifer is the world largest aquifer, known for causing the most people having to look up the word “aquifer”.

7

Kool-Aid was invented in Hastings in 1927 by Edwin Perkins, who was known for bursting through walls of local establishments and shouting, “Oh, YEAH!”

8

Arbor Day was founded in Nebraska City by J. Sterling Morton in 1872, in hopes that someone would actually plant a tree there.

9

The official state nickname was changed to the “Cornhusker State” in 1945, as the “Kool-Aid State”” was deemed too commercial.

10

Nebraska is the nation’s largest user of center pivot irrigation. If you don’t know what center pivot irrigation is, don’t worry; we’ll still send you our corn.

11

90% of Nebraskan’s identify their religious affiliation as “Christian”, while 94% also identify themselves as “Tom Osbornians”.

12

The 911 system of emergency communications was first developed in Lincoln, where it was used as an emergency response to a Cornhusker loss.

13

The Corporate headquarters for Mutual of Omaha has 7 underground floors, where the ghost of Marlin Perkins is commonly seen chasing Jim Fowler in his jeep.

14

The world’s largest porch swing, which can seat 25 adults, is located in Hebron, Nebraska. Unfortunately, the world’s largest porch is located 956 miles away in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada.

15

For the first time in U.S. history, two women ran against each other for governorship of a state in Nebraska in 1986. They both lost to a “Tom Osborne”, who was a write-in candidate.

16

Former President Gerald R. Ford was born in Omaha on July 14, 1913, and immediately tripped and fell into Council Bluffs.

17

The State Bird is the Western Meadowlark, the State Insect is the Honeybee, and the State Fossil is that old guy that sits in the Hy-Vee deli and complains about teenagers all morning.

18

The State Gemstone is Blue Chalcedony, a cryptocrystalline form of silica, composed of very fine intergrowths of the minerals quartz and moganite, which are both silica minerals, but differ in that quartz has a trigonal crystal structure, while moganite is monoclinic. In other words, a blue rock.

19

It is illegal to go whale fishing in Nebraska. Ironically, it is likewise illegal to husk corn in Hawaii.

20

The Elephant Hall museum in Lincoln has the largest collection of elephant skeletons in the world, some of whom are believed to have been linemen for the Cornhuskers football team.

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