Erin Hauser, curator of the Saunders County Museum in Wahoo, often hears visitors say that there must have been something in the water between 1880 and 1903.
During those 23 years, Wahoo produced the “Five Famous Sons” — Samuel Crawford, Clarence Anderson, Howard Hanson, Darryl F. Zanuck and George W. Beadle.
The Saunders County Museum in Wahoo has exhibits on each of the Five Famous Sons. The exhibits showcase each man’s accomplishments through photographs, memorabilia and awards.
“What’s in each exhibit is a really good representation of the man,” Hauser said.
Crawford grew up playing baseball in Wahoo. He went on to play for the Detroit Tigers and was inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame in 1957.
Anderson was known for his illustrations of horses. He wrote and illustrated the “Billy and Blaze” children’s books.
Hanson, a music composer, was director of the Eastman School of Music for 40 years. He went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for music in 1944.
Zanuck, a widely known movie producer, was a co-founder of 20th Century-Fox. He wrote scripts for “Rin Tin Tin” movies and produced movies such as “All About Eve” and “The Grapes of Wrath.”
Beadle was a scientist and studied genetics. He won the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1958.
In addition to the displays at the museum, areas dedicated to each of the men are on display at the Hanson House, birthplace of the famous composer. The home, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, is maintained by the Wahoo Women’s Club.
The Five Famous Sons are part of the town’s identity and a source of pride, Hauser said.
“Something significant has come out of this town,” she said. “They’ve accomplished something on a national stage. You’re intrigued and in some ways, you’re very proud.”