Early Omaha: Gateway to the West

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Bayless Ferryboat docked on the Missouri

The foot of Izard Street in Omaha on the Omaha & Northwestern tracks (begun in 1869 and built 40 miles to Herman, Nebraska) which eventually became part of the Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha (the Omaha Road). A freight house is shown behind some box cars. Clearly most of the goods are unloaded right on the ground from wagons and teams which would haul the supplies from the steamboat. You can see also in the background a blurred image of one of the wagons moving toward the “Lizzie Bayliss” (named after Samuel Bayliss’ youngest daughter Lizzie, arrived in Council Bluffs May 29, 1861) [117’ long x 21’ wide x 3’ deep] waiting at the shore. (3) There also appears to be the photographer’s wagon. These were usually short in length with a tall box-type structure on the wagon bed behind the driver’s seat. The large two-story building in the background resembles standard railroad depot/hotel construction of the period.

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