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Nebraska County Countdown #57: Johnson County - The Story of Colonel Johnson vs. Chief Tecumseh

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Population of 5,217 and is made up of the following towns: Cook, Crab Orchard, Elk Creek, Saint Mary, Sterling, Tecumseh and Vesta.

Tecumseh is the county seat which has one of my favorite courthouses in the entire state. It is so clean. I could probably eat off of that floor.

If you have been following us on our countdown you would notice that there are some pretty sad looking courthouses. I’m looking at you...Boyd County and Keith County.


The county was named after Col. Richard M. Johnson. He was a prominent officer in the War of 1812 and became the Vice President of these United States from 1837 to 1841.

Now it is about to get interesting. According to this website, the legend is that Col. Johnson surrounded and killed Chief Tecumseh, who was a famous Shawnee Chief in 1813 during the Battle of the Thames in Canada.

So just to review: Johnson County is named after the man who killed Chief Tecumseh which is who the Johnson County seat is named after. Hashtag. Mind. Blown.

Here is a map

Some places of interest in Johnson County:

Tecumseh Historic District - was the first town I had ever been in when I was little where cars routinely parked in the middle of the street. Still an interesting concept.

Carnegie Building - The first public libraries for Tecumseh were not pretentious. They were kept in private homes, at the city hall and elsewhere, with such books and magazines as could be secured through contributions and otherwise.

Memorial Cannon - the replica of a World War 1 cannon stands on the courthouse lawn.

Old Johnson County Jail - “For a century the old jail hosted hundreds of law breakers of all degrees, from felony to simple misdemeanors. Over the years, the jail also hosted many harmless hoboes and tramps as well. They would request the sheriff lock them up for the night, and then would be on their way the next morning.”

Montz Motorcycle Museum - According to one commenter, this Museum has 74 bikes “and each one has a story.”

Husker Facts

Best Ever Husker: Kenny Walker wore number #57. One interesting fact unknown to some younger fans is that he was deaf. Yet he still ended up playing several years in the NFL and CFL.

Notable Huskers: Chris Kelsay, Kelly Saalfeld, John Adkins, Zach Sterup, and Jeremiah Sirles,

Current Husker: Jacob Weinmaster will wear #57 for the Huskers in 2018. He is a walk-on from Loveland, Colorado and was one of the best special teams contributors for the Huskers in 2017.

  • Academic All-Big Ten (2017)
  • Nebraska Scout Team Special Teams MVP (2015)
  • Six-Time Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll
  • Brook Berringer Citizenship Team (2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Tom Osborne Citizenship Team (2016, 2017, 2018)

What have I missed? Well probably a lot.