The village of Brownville is a historic little town located in Nemaha County. The population was 132 at the 2010 census. Established in 1854, Brownville was the largest town in the Nebraska Territory, with a population of 1,309 by 1880.
Brownville sits in the Loess Hills above the Missouri River Valley. US Highway 136 runs through the town, exiting the state via the Brownville Bridge. The Bridge was built over the Missouri River in 1939 and is now on the National Register of Historic Places. Brownville is primarily a tourist attraction with several old houses opened for tours or converted into museums. Art galleries and wineries in and near Brownville have also helped to make the town an increasingly attractive getaway.
A neat little walking/biking trail winds through town and passes several historic buildings and the Whiskey Run Creek Vineyard. Near the River, the Steamboat Trace Bike Trail runs north through the town of Peru and finishes just south of Nebraska City.
Omaha’s River City Star (paddleboat) was built in the town in 1967, and was originally named the Belle of Brownville. The Governor Furnas Arboretum was planted in the city in 1992. The arboretum is named in honor of Nebraska’s second governor, Robert W. Furnas, the signer of the first declaration of Arbor Day.
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