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Long-awaited City Bones book available SaturdayTell North Platte what you think
Courtesy Photo­Image
Restored photo of downtown North Platte on the book's cover.
Courtesy Photo­Image
Storefronts on Front St., before demolition in the early 1970s.
Courtesy Photo­Image
Dixon Building on Dewey St.
Courtesy Photo­Image
The Hendy Ogier building, now Erickson's Furniture.

City Bones, a book about North Platte’s stately downtown buildings, will be officially presented on Nov. 17.

The full title is City Bones: Landmarks of North Platte, second edition. It contains the histories and photographs of many downtown buildings. Several of the buildings tell stories of the "Little Chicago" times of North Platte, when gambling and prostitution were relatively common.

The long-awaited book was put together by Kaycee Anderson and Steve Olson of the North Platte Public Library. The book is an update of the original City Bones, written in 2005 and often excerpted in the Bulletin's profiles of downtown history.

The original book was the work of six people and was put together in three weeks and published for the Creativity Unlimited Arts Council’s literary festival in 2005. It quickly sold out. Sharon Owen of A to Z Books sold the last copies and called for a second printing.

Anderson said given that the original book was written in three weeks time, the authors did a good job with their resources they and time frame. Buildings of ill repute were revealed along with the more substantial businesses that built North Platte.

When the authors decided to revise and update the original book, they agreed to include more photos and histories. They spent a substantial amount of time reading microfilms, combing courthouse records and looking through historical city business directories to create the new, improved second edition.

This edition is a 112-page book with histories of 39 buildings, nearly doubling the original book’s 23 building histories.

Shirai Armstrong, a graphic artist for the North Platte Public Library, designed the cover and laid out the pages. Armstrong also took new photographs of each building so readers can compare the times, then and now, and put together an index.

North Platte Bulletin Editor George Lauby helped with the book, making layout recommendations and other changes to the first proofs.

Carolyn Clark, the North Platte Public Library’s web page designer, helped with editing and proof reading.

The book acknowledges those who helped the put it together, especially the original authors of the first edition. The book also has an index in the back, so specific projects can be located more readily. An section on the downtown "urban renewal" of the late 1960s and early 1970s is included, commemorating three blocks of buildings that were demolished.

The book also contains photographs of historic of buildings near downtown.

The book is published by the Lincoln County Historical Society and Museum. Copies will be sold in the museum's gift shop. A to Z Books and Fort Cody will also have copies for sale.

The first presentation and book signing is scheduled from 1-3 p.m. on Nov. 17 at A to Z Books. The book will retail for about $16. Profits will benefit the historical museum, Anderson said.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 11/12/2012
Copyright © 2012 northplattebulletin.com - All rights reserved.
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