David Hendee


Little Denmark, Nebraska, Danish settlements in America, Danish American immigrants, Julius Nielsen


No charming Old World architecture. No Main Street decorated with Danish flags flapping in the breeze. No annual ethnic festival celebrating Danish roots. And it can’t be found on a map. But a small cluster of farms and ranches carved out of the prairie by Danish immigrants in sparsely settled western Nebraska in the late nineteenth century has maintained its identity as “Little Denmark” long after the homesteaders and their families assimilated into American culture. This obscure and remote Little Denmark was founded, flourished, and faded in the shadows of other Nebraska communities with vibrant Danish populations and institutions— Blair, Dannebrog, Minden, Nysted and Omaha among them— and yet the homesteaders’ descendants continue to reap the legacy of what the pioneers planted of themselves in the land more than 130 years ago.