Nebraska Historical Marker: Mud Springs

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Nebraska Historical Marker: Mud Springs



US Highway 385 between Bridgeport and Dalton (15 mi S of Bridgeport or 6 mi N of Dalton), Morrill County, Nebraska

View this marker's location 41.491140, -102.983708

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Marker Text

Mud Springs, so-named for its seeps of water, was an oasis on the dry plateau between Lodgepole Creek and the North Platte River. Overland travelers began using the springs in the late 1850s when a cutoff was laid out from Old Julesburg to intersect the North Platte valley trail near Courthouse Rock. In 1860-61 the famed Pony Express followed the cutoff, building a log and sod “home station” at Mud Springs. The station became a stop on the overland stagecoach route in 1861, then a telegraph office when the line reached there that August, ending its use by the Pony Express.

On February 4-6, 1865, Sioux and Cheyenne warriors attacked Mud Springs after sacking Julesburg in retaliation for Col. John M. Chivington's massacre of peaceful Cheyennes at Sand Creek, Colorado, the previous November. The nine soldiers there held out until reinforcements arrived, and the warriors withdrew. The telegraph station was abandoned about 1877. In 1939 Etta Scherer and her children deeded the Mud Springs Station site to the Nebraska State Historical Society. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Further Information


John D McDermott, “‘We had a terribly hard time letting them go’: The Battles of Mud Springs and Rush Creek, February 1865” Nebraska History 77 (1996): 78-88

Marker program

See Nebraska Historical Marker Program for more information.