Otoe County is named for the Otoe Native American tribe which is derived from “oto” meaning “lovers of pleasure”.
Surrounding County Courthouses:
N – Cass County
W – Lancaster County
Created: November 23, 1854
Nebraska City 1855 – present
County Courthouse – Nebraska City
Location: 1021 Central Avenue / South 10th Street
Built: 1864 – 1865
Style: Moorish and Italianate
Architect: G Basset
Contractor: W R Crag and F W Wood
Description: The building faces north and is a two story red colored brick structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Nebraska City. The east and west wings of the rectangular shaped building project from the main building. There is a rubble stone foundation finished with a rough ashlar face. The second story windows are arched and these windows feature a stone string course which forms the arch, and connects the springing lines of all the window arches around the perimeter of the building. The first story central entrance is framed with white colored stone. On the center of the roof is a high octagonal white colored cupola. The roof line is flat. The courtroom is located on the second story of the east wing. The building houses the District Court of the 1st Judicial District and County Court of the 2nd Judicial District. Wing additions were constructed in 1882 on the west side and in 1936 on the east side, creating an “H” shaped building.
Note: The courthouse is the oldest public building in Nebraska which has been in continuous use since its completion and the oldest former courthouse is located in Sarpy County.
See: National Register of Historic Places – Otoe County Courthouse
History: The county was created in 1855 and Nebraska City was selected was the county seat. Court was held in a log cabin and rented premises above downtown stores. The first and present courthouse was constructed in 1864 to 1865 at a cost of $22,500.
County Courthouse - Nebraska City
Photos taken 2008