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“To Live and Die on the Plains” tells a tale of struggle

“To Live and Die on the Plains” tells a tale of struggle
May 24, 2013
Speaker Jeff Barnes will present “To Live and Die on the Plains” on Wednesday, June 5, 6 p.m., at Florence Branch, 2920 Bondesson St. This presentation is made possible by Humanities Nebraska (HN) and Omaha Public Library as part of the HN Speakers Bureau.

It wasn’t all sunsets and songbirds in crossing the Great Plains. Death was a frequent and indiscriminant fellow traveler on the wagon trails and it took many forms – diseases, gunshots, stampedes, nature, accidents, Indian attacks and more. Author Jeff Barnes presents an interesting look at how you could have “bought the farm” on the Platte River Road, or at least have had some close calls. Rarely seen historic maps, paintings, photographs and other visuals are used to tell these tragic pioneer tales. NOTE: Some of the historic images presented are graphic in nature and may not be appropriate for younger audiences.

“To Live and Die on the Plains” is one of approximately 300 programs offered through the Humanities Nebraska Speakers Bureau. The more than 165 available speakers include acclaimed scholars, writers, musicians, storytellers and folklorists on topics ranging from pioneer heritage to ethics and law, to international and multicultural issues, making it the largest humanities speakers bureau in the nation. For information detailing available speakers, and guidelines for booking them, visit the speakers section at or contact Humanities Nebraska at 215 Centennial Mall South, Suite 330, Lincoln, NE 68508, phone (402) 474-2131, fax (402) 474-4852 or e-mail

Humanities Nebraska provides major funding for this program. HN receives support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Nebraska State Legislature, the Nebraska Cultural Endowment, and private donations. Visit for information on programs and events at Omaha Public Library’s 12 metro area locations.

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