Ben Justman, Director of the Sarpy County Museum was determined to write a history book before the pandemic broke out.
He was surprised to find that there was not a book dedicated to the history of the county and set out to compile the years worth of information on the area into book form.
After months of research, Ben wrote “Sarpy County: A History.”
Justman said to research for the book he had several source documents available to him at the Sarpy County Museum and supplemented the research using an online data base.
“The good thing about the internet is there are things pertinent to Bellevue and Sarpy County that are not in the state in terms of being held at archives,” Justman said.
He said the online availability of information allowed him to research from the comfort of his own home and saved him the time of having to go out on trips throughout the country.
To figure out what was to be included in the book and what part of history was to be left out was a challenge for him.
“I really wanted to include stories that either hadn’t been heard before or told or to revisit stories, that hadn’t been told in a long time,” Justman said, “I wanted to kind of get out of the same old narrative that we’ve always told and look at things through kind of the lens of modernization.”
The books starts from the origins of Bellevue and other surrounding cities and goes through years of how the county has evolved and persevered through natural disasters, economic hardships and past pandemics
Justman said the best place to get a copy of the book would be at the museum. The Sarpy County Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Justman said those that are interested can get their books singed or inscribed by him while at the museum.
He said the community can also give the museum a call at 402-292-1880 and let the staff know ahead of time for those that planning to come get a copy of the book.