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he derived but little advantage. Much of his early education was acquired by private study after he had attained his majority. When he was twenty-one, he engaged in the cattle business for his father, and was absent in Wisconsin when the latter died. Abandoning the cattle business, he engaged in mercantile pursuits, in which he was quite successful until the panic of 1857, when he lost $17,000 in one bank alone. This same year he was nominated for state senator on the republican ticket, but declined on account of financial reverses.
In 1858 Mr. Butler came to Nebraska Territory and settled at Pawnee City, where he continued mercantile business and stock-raising. In these he was successful, laying by no small fortune. His political career opens with his election to the territorial legislature as representative, in 1861. In 1866 the republican convention nominated him for first governor of the State, about the time that the legislature framed a constitution and submitted it to the people. “The democrats nominated their foremost leader, J. Sterling Morton. George Francis Train nominated himself, and the three candidates made the prairies of the territory ring with their oratory in the early summer."'1 The votes cast in the election that year, as well as in 1868 and 1870, for Butler, were as follows :
The period of four years beginning with 1868 was a time of very great activity in Nebraska, politically, agriculturally, and commercially. It was during this period
that the capital was removed from Omaha to Lincoln and the University, Asylum and Penitentiary located at the latter place “To the tremendous energy of Governor Butler and his great business capacity, was due much of the success of this enterprise of the new State. During his administration, also, the railroad policy of the legislature was shaped, and to his earnest efforts was due the success of railroad enterprises, long before the population and resources of the State offered very great inducements to railroad building.
His labors for the material advancement of the new State were incessant. He spared neither time nor money from his own purse in making his campaigns, and for widening public spirit and organizing what little capital there was available. He was the father of the present railroad system of the State. Elected a third time by an increased majority to the Governorship, in spite of the rival ambitions in his party, the governor met for the first time a hostile majority in the legislature. In the face of political and factional hostility, roused by a close and exciting senatorial election, a local jealousy of the aspiring city of Lincoln that he had helped to found, and the prejudice against the third term, the governor was out of his element and was not able to escape the toils. After a long and bitter fight on articles of impeachment,
he was finally convicted of a technical violation of law and removed from office. The indignation of the people, however, soon forced a reconsideration of this judgment, and long before the legislature erased from the records by formal resolution the outrage against Butler, the people had acquitted him and given him the place to which he was entitled in the annals of the State.1
It is intended to have the subject of the impeachment of Governor Butler thoroughly treated in an article devoted to that subject, in the near future.
After his retirement from public life, Governor Butler devoted himself mainly to his private pursuits. His home was three and one-half miles west of Pawnee City, where he died May 25, 1891, from heart failure.
Aebraska State historical soeiety.
HIS department of the public work of the State was established by an act
of the Legislature of 1883. Its headquarters are in the ground floor of the State University LIBRARY BUILDING, where its collections are kept. Into its fire-proof rooms is being gathered everything that relates to the history of Nebraska. As a matter of public record, for the use of all citizens of the State, the following kinds of material are sought, and anyone interested in the history of Nebraska will place the Society under great obligations by helping to bring things to the Society rooms.
1.- Original diaries, letters, manuscripts (or copies of these), papers and pamphlets, relating to the early settlement of Nebraska.
2.-Maps and plats of cities, towns, counties, and special sections of the country, together with exact dates and circumstances connected with the founding, location, or removal of any of these.
3.-Biographies of all early settlers, and of prominent people in the State, with photographs of the same.
4.- All the old files of papers possible to secure, especially the territorial newspapers. The Society will, in due time, bind all these that come into its possession, and place them where they may be referred to at any time.
5.-Histories and narratives of Nebraska regiments and companies in the Civil War and in the Indian Wars; and personal narratives.
6.-All books, pamphlets, speeches, catalogues of schools, etc., published in the State or relating to it.
7.-Photographs of men, women, public buildings, cities and towns, and Nebraska scenery. Everything of the kind that can be had.
8.-Relics of all kinds: Indian implements, fire-arms, garments, and things representative of the life of the various tribes that have lived in the State. Remains of prehistoric tribes, such as have been found in the State: pottery, etc. Fire-arms and relics of the Civil War.
9.-Besides books, pamphlets and relics that relate to the State, the Society is adding to its collection of colonial documents and papers. It is desired to collect here, for the use of the students of the State, all old papers, books, etc., relating to the history of the United States. Some very old papers have already been donated, and doubtless many citizens of the State have something to give.
Among the papers already in possession of the Society are three or four of the first files of Horace Greeley's Weekly Tribune, of 1841-1845. There has also been commenced a collection of old text-books, and anyone having such published before the war, and willing to send them to the Society, is requested to send word to the Librarian.
Those having large collections or valuable articles of historical value, which they do not want to part with for any reason, may place their collections at the Society rooms where they will be safe from fire, water, or theft, removable at the option of the owner.
It seems especially desirable that the State Historical Society rooms should be head-quarters for the collection of G. A. R. ics, and to that end old soldiers are cordially invited to use as large a part of the rooms of the Society as they need.
ith the summer of 1894, begins the issue of historical
material in the form of a quarterly magazine. From 1885 to 1893, five volumes of “ Transactions and Reports" were issued, and very many complete sets of these have been distributed over the State. Henceforth, the Library Committee has decided, no more will be given away. It is desired to exchange the remaining volumes for such valuable historical works as the Society does not yet possess, or for Indian and other relics. Those very much desiring copies of Vols. I. to V., can get them in either of two ways : by exchanging books or newspaper files for them, or by purchase at the following prices. Vols. I. and II., $0.50; Vol. III., $1.00; Vols. IV. and V., $0.75.
In this new form, by which the Society hopes to reach the people of the State more readily, will be published as much of the history of Nebraska as the appropriations will allow. Chroniclers of the annals of cities, towns, counties, and special localities will please to correspond freely with the Librarian of the Society, and voluntarily write down and send in articles, or data in any convenient form, on all such subjects as the following: Freighting, Overland Travel before 1868, Indian Tribes, Indian Chiefs or noted warriors, Special Settlements, Founding of Academies and Colleges, Indian Wars, Local Incidents of historic value, Civil War history, Authentic explanations of names of cities, rivers, counties, etc.
Office and Collections at Library Building, State University, Lincoln, Neb.
Post Office Address, box 1531.