Wedding dresses and friendship quilts

At the Chase County Museum, you can find a wide variety of items on display. While there, you're bound to learn a little more about life in southwest Nebraska.

At the museum, there are many highlights. "We have a great collection of wedding dresses," Historical Society President Charley Colton said. "They are from the late 1800's up until the 1950's and 1960's. We are proud of the donated dresses, and you can see what they've looked like through the years. We also have a number of 'neighborhood quilts' or 'friendship quilts'. When you were a newlywed and you came into a community, neighbor women would make a quilt with local names on it so you'd know who your neighbors were."

The Chase County Museum also features old-time farm equipment. "It's kind of fun to see how that has progressed over the years," Colton said. The museum also features a nice collection of military uniforms.

The community of Champion where the museum is located is known for the Champion mill. There is history related to the mill at the museum. "Champion originally was named Hamilton," Colton said. They changed their name to Champion hoping to get some favor from Champion S. Chase who the county is named after. They wanted to see Champion be elected the county seat, but it lost out to Imperial. The railroad ended in Imperial." Chase county is an agricultural area. "Our center-pivot irrigation system helps with that," Colton said. "We do field corn, popcorn, winter wheat, dry edible beans, soybeans, potatoes and sugar beets."

As you can see, you can learn quite a bit during a visit to the Chase County Museum. We certainly did. So the next time you are in Imperial, check out the museum just a few miles south in Champion.