Our Town Lincoln — Historic South Bottoms

LINCOLN, Neb. — There's a historic area just south of downtown Lincoln known as the South Bottoms. The location was known as a"port of entry" neighborhood.

This means that back in the late 1800's, many early immigrants from Germany and Russia looked to find housing in this particular area.

Ed Zimmer is the historic preservation planner for Lincoln, and he has been busy connecting early photos of the South Bottoms area to current-day locations in the capital city.

"It's an early, early house in Lincoln, probably in the half dozen oldest in town, dates from the 1870's,” Zimmer said of a picture of one of the residences in the area.”And a couple of years ago, the city made it a Lincoln landmark."

Zimmer said the area was of interest to the city because of it's connection to the Galbraith family.

"Because that gives us a link into a story that I've enjoyed for the last 20 years or so about a Lincoln photographer named John Johnson," Zimmer added.

While it is difficult to know everything about the time frame, photos give many a unique glimpse into turn of the 20th century life in Lincoln.

"In the images, two of them, John and Mable Gailbraith are standing right at their front steps when they lived in this house, another one they were a couple doors down the street looking back at the house so we are on the location where, just about a century ago, that couple were standing in front of their little brick house," Zimmer said.

If you'd like to learn more about this particular area of Lincoln history, you are invited to check out a book co-written by Zimmer that's titled 'Lincoln in Black & White.'