could be Buffalo's crossing the platte

 Research Papers

Today is:

Women In Kearney’s History

This is the first of a series of programs focusing on women who were important to the history of Kearney

Louisa Collins (first woman to settle in Kearney)

    1831 - Born in Ohio

    1849 - She came with her family to a farm near Iowa City – age 18

    Following year she married Asbury Collins, a Methodist minister

    Ca 1870 – Living at Red Oak, Iowa
        Asbury had health problems described as “hemorrhaging of the lungs” – gave up preaching
        D. N. Smith – friend of Asbury's, land agent for Burlington & Missouri River Railroad

    1871 – April – D.N. & Asbury located Kearney site

    May - Collins family came to Kearney

    Louisa kept a diary for about 2 years beginning May 1, 1871.  She did not write something every day except during about the first month when she and her family moved and settled in their new home.  Here is her first entry and what she wrote during the day as she rode the train from Council Bluffs to Kearney Station.

    1st entry - Red Oak, May 1, 1871

        Mr. Collins, Milton, & Finnie have started for our future home in Nebraska. Little Lou and I are left to follow
        on the train

            [Milton and Finnie (Finley) were the Collins' sons.  At this time they were 20 and 14.  Lou was Louisa's niece whom she was raising following the death of Lou's mother, Louisa's sister.  Lou was 4]

    May 13, 1871

         Bid adieu to O such dear dear good friends

        On our way, darling Lou and I, to meet the balance of the family

        On the train bound for, shall I say home? (well it is 5 miles west of Kearney Station, Nebr.) Yes home for it is
        home where husband and children are

        But O the thought of leaving all beside them that ever was as can be dear on earth to me again

        Home and friends left so far behind

        Outside of our family circle I feel that my work is done
        O God forgive me if this is wrong but all look dark and bare

        Never again do I expect to meet kind and loving friend in hour of sorrow

        Never again will it be our privilege to walk to the altar of prayer with tender hearts and hear the shouts of new
        born souls

        O Lord thou hast stood by us in hours of deep affliction. Thou will not forsake us

        In thee we would trust

        Here my first sight of a Pawnee
            such looking beings
            my heart sunk within me with fear
            is my future home to be surrounded by such beings?
            O Lord, save me
            how can I live in such fear and dread?
            Glad we don’t see any more Pawnees Tonight

        (O how glad I am) my dear husband meets me
        I will feel sure that I am safe

Asbury did meet them, they built their home here and, although they left for preaching assignments, Kearney was their home and they always returned here.

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Revised: 02/23/2018