Scenic USA - Nebraska

Ogallala Front Street

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Front Street - Ogallala, Nebraska

Photo by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA Photography

   Ogallala, a town named after a Native Oglala Band of Sioux, was a lively page from the history of America's Old West. Here on Front Street, a gathering of Texas cattle drovers, gamblers, pretty gals and fast guns made this Nebraska town the official "Cowboy Capitol." Ogallala grew up along the South Platte River, a natural right-of-way that guided travelers along the Oregon Trail. First catering to Pony Express riders, the town was eventually thrust into a new era when tracks for the Union Pacific were laid through the valley. Using the railroad to ship cattle to the East, Ogallala marked the end of long cattle drives from the open ranges of the plains, and became a place for cowboys to celebrate after long months in the saddle.
   Today, the city of Ogallala (oh-gah-LA-luh) is just a "stone's throw" from one of America's major east-west arteries, Interstate 80. Once consisting of a courthouse, school, one hotel, a few houses, and twenty-five residents, the city has grown into the largest city in Keith County. The store-fronts here on Front Street in Ogallala give a feeling of an Old West main street. The line of shop offer tourists a selection of restaurants, saloons, a general store and museum. Visitors will also find old fashioned live entertainment at the Crystal Palace Revue, a combination of old western vocals and instrumental music.

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