Geneva, Nebraska is the county seat of Fillmore County, located in southeast Nebraska. Early settlers came from many different countries and the first homesteads were filed in 1866. Fillmore City, the first town, was platted four years later in 1870. Officers were elected the following year and the county was named Fillmore for President Millard Fillmore. An election was held in Nathaniel McCall's dugout and the county seat was named Geneva after his former home in Geneva, Illinois. A group of tough pioneers battled grasshoppers, prairie fires, droughts and blizzards, to found towns, start businesses, built churches and schools which helped Fillmore County grow. The Fillmore County Courthouse in Geneva was built in 1873 (one source says 1894). The estimated population in 2004 was 6,462.
Geneva was laid out on an open prairie but now has a fine growth of forest and shade trees surrounding it. The original town site comprised a little more than forty-eight acres and was laid out in lots of forty-eight wide and one-hundred and eighty-four deep Streets were one hundred feet wide and alleys sixteen feet wide. The first building in the town was the county jail completed in 1873. Next was the court house completed May 1873. In 1876 the town began to improve rapidly and since 1877 progress has been steady. Its location is about eight miles from the Burlington & Missouri Railroad in Nebraska.
Not the least of the attractions in Geneva is the public square which belongs to the county. It consists of two entire blocks, with the courthouse in the center. A large number of forest and shade trees, set out some years ago, afford a good shade. The square is a favorite spot for holding picnics and celebrations.
My great grandparents, Benjamin Franklin Morgan & Perlina Stanley were married at Geneva on April 3, 1872. They evidently lived there from at least 1874 - 1891, since all their children with the exception of, Kephart, were born there. Kephart was born at Strang, Nebraska in 1882. Their oldest son, Martin E., was born abt Feb.1874 (or 1873) and died 18 Nov. 1874 (or 1873) at 10 months of age and is buried in Chelsea Cemetery. Three other infants, Sylvia Ellen was born Jan. 4, 1875 and died about Jan. 4, 1875; Data Lois was born Oct. 23, 1887 and died 1888; Benjamin Franklin was born 27 Oct. 1889 and died about 1889. They are probably buried in the same row with Martin E. but there are no grave markers for them. Seven other children were born to them, Kephart who was born in Strang and Charley Huron, Della Jane, Earl William, Nellie Mae & Golson "Goldie" born in Geneva and Stella Maude In Madison County, Iowa.
The Martin & Zelda Capehart Genealogy Website
The information on this website has been compiled from many sources. We have tried to document and verify all information as much as possible and will continue to do so. If you find an error or have additional information please contact us.
ãcopyright 2009 by Zelda Capehart All Rights Reserved
The Geneva Courthouse
NOTE: We visited Geneva, NE in May 2006 and took this photo of the courthouse. What a beautiful and impressive sight it was as we drove up N. 9th Street towards it.
The Geneva Courthouse is a two-story brick building built in 1893 or 1894. The prominent three-story clock tower was installed by jeweler W.P. McCall in 1909. The courthouse underwent a multi-million dollar restoration and conservation project and people can once again hear the clocks chime. The courthouse is listed on the National Register of Historical Places.