Library AND

A collection of books and archival materials relating to the history of Hall County and Central Nebraska from the 1840s until 1930.


The Library and Archives of the Stuhr Museum are located in the Edgar and Frances Reynolds Research Center. The Reynolds Center was made possible by generous grants from the Edgar and Frances Reynolds Foundation, Inc. and the Peter Kiewit Foundation.

The Research Department is open to all individuals interested in historical research and study. The department also offers seminars, workshops, and programs in genealogical and historical research; using local history in the classroom; preservation of family heirlooms; and interpreting family heirlooms, including photographs, textiles, and many other objects.


Please contact the Research Department to make an appointment at least 72 hours prior to your visit.

Monday thru Friday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday: By appointment only
Sunday: CLOSED

Contact us:

Leschinsky Digitization Project

The Research Department is currently working on the Leschinsky Digitization Project, a project dedicated to cleaning, scanning, accessioning, and properly storing a collection of 25,000+ glass plate negatives.

The Leschinsky Digitization Project is being headed by Director of Research, Becky Matticks and Keshia Mcclantoc, Digital Archives Assistant, along with a number of volunteers. As of November 2022, they have cleaned over 10,000 glass plate negatives and scanned and accessioned approximately 4,900 glass plate negatives. Although the Leschinsky Digitization Project is an ongoing endeavor, these photos have the potential to become valuable assets for Stuhr Museum exhibits as well as significant materials within the Research Department’s offerings.

Julius Leschinsky was the premier photographer in Grand Island and central Nebraska from the 1890s through the 1930s. His photography shop, The Leschinsky Studio, was most popular for its portraiture work, but Leschinsky also documented a variety of aspects of life in Grand Island during this time. Stuhr Museum has been in possession of Lechinsky’s collection of glass plate


negatives since a generous donation in the 1980s. The push to digitize the collection in this current moment coincides with the presence of the appropriate technologies, time, and labor but also with an overall push to make the Research Department at the Stuhr Museum more accessible to the public.

Description of Holdings

The Research Department’s collection contains books and archival materials relating to the history of Hall County and Central Nebraska from the 1840s until 1930. The Stuhr Museum possesses an excellent facility where the collection is stored in a climatically controlled environment with chemical fire suppression. The Research Department operates as a specialized, non-lending closed stack library and archive. All materials may only be used in the Research Library under staff supervision. The following is a partial list of the materials contained within the Research Department’s collection:

  • Books – period and contemporary
  • Modern and historical newsletters and periodicals
  • Federal and State Records
    • United States land records
    • United States and Nebraska census records for Hall County
      • 1860, 1870, 1880, 1885, 1900, 1910
  • Hall County newspapers on microfilm
    • Grand Island, 1870-1921
    • Cairo, 1907-1936
    • Doniphan, 1896-1925
    • Wood River, 1895-1922
  • City directories and telephone books
  • Maps, atlases, and plat books
  • Posters and broadsides
  • Photographs, postcards, scrapbooks, and albums
  • Oral history tapes and transcripts
  • Manuscripts from families and business of Hall County [See List]
  • Research files for Hall County families and businesses
  • Cemetery records and plot maps
  • Genealogical databases for Hall County
    • Hall County marriages
    • Anniversary announcements
    • Obituaries
    • Naturalization records

Research Department’s collection

There is no fee for visitors to view and research items in the Research Department’s collection. Stuhr Museum staff may be hired to conduct research and provide reproductions for a fee. See the Fee Schedule for the Research Department.