Shelby, Nebraska

Shelby, Nebraska

Infobox Settlement
official_name = Shelby, Nebraska
settlement_type = Village
nickname =
motto =

imagesize =
image_caption =


imagesize =
image_caption =


mapsize = 250px
map_caption = Location of Shelby, Nebraska

mapsize1 =
map_caption1 =

subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = United States
subdivision_type1 = State
subdivision_name1 = Nebraska
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = Polk
government_footnotes =
government_type =
leader_title =
leader_name =
leader_title1 =
leader_name1 =
established_title =
established_date =

unit_pref = Imperial
area_footnotes =

area_magnitude =
area_total_km2 = 1.4
area_land_km2 = 1.4
area_water_km2 = 0.0
area_total_sq_mi = 0.5
area_land_sq_mi = 0.5
area_water_sq_mi = 0.0

population_as_of = 2000
population_footnotes =
population_total = 690
population_density_km2 = 489.7
population_density_sq_mi = 1268.4

timezone = Central (CST)
utc_offset = -6
timezone_DST = CDT
utc_offset_DST = -5
elevation_footnotes =
elevation_m = 500
elevation_ft = 1640
latd = 41 |latm = 11 |lats = 39 |latNS = N
longd = 97 |longm = 25 |longs = 36 |longEW = W

postal_code_type = ZIP code
postal_code = 68662
area_code = 402
blank_name = FIPS code
blank_info = 31-44595GR|2
blank1_name = GNIS feature ID
blank1_info = 0833371GR|3
website = [ Shelby, Nebraska]
footnotes =

Shelby is a village in Polk County, Nebraska, United States. The population was 690 at the 2000 census. The center of population of Nebraska is located near Shelby [] . Shelby lies along the north side of Highway 81 near the eastern edge of Polk County. It is six miles east of Osceola, and just 17 miles south and three miles west of Columbus.


Shelby, originally named "Arcade," was established in 1880. In the winter of 1880-81 postal authorities objected to the name Arcade due to confusion with the town of Arcadia, Nebraska in Loup County. In search of a new name for the settlement, the people chose Shelby, after the name of an official with the Omaha and Republican Valley Railway (a branch of the Union Pacific). The land which Arcade was established on was owned by Gilbert Van Vorce and Peter Matter. Seeing a need for a trade center in the area these two men gave the railroad company half interest in their property and the town was established. After the railroad retained their 200 feet on each side and closest to the tracks, eight blocks were located on each side parallel to the tracks. The original streets are still present and retain the names of Walnut, Elm, Chestnut, Pine, Cherry, and Oak. In 1880 the town of Arcade boasted a population of 93 with businesses to include a drug store, hardware store, hotel, boot and shoe shop, livery stable, and physician. Today Shelby has 690 residents, businesses, programs, community organizations, and a new housing development subdivision. Shelby celebrated its centennial in 1979 and it's Quasquicentennial in 2004.


Shelby is located at coor dms|41|11|39|N|97|25|36|W|city (41.194187, -97.426717)GR|1.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the village has a total area of 0.5 square miles (1.4 km²), all of it land.

Distance in miles from:

* Omaha...... 81
* Lincoln...... 68
* Chicago...... 547
* Dallas...... 623
* Denver...... 473
* Los Angeles...... 1,484
* New York...... 1,321
* Kansas City...... 259 "Distance in highway miles"


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 690 people, 299 households, and 199 families residing in the village. The population density was 1,268.4 people per square mile (493.4/km²). There were 323 housing units at an average density of 593.8/sq mi (230.9/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 98.55% White, 0.14% African American, 0.29% Asian, 0.29% from other races, and 0.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.59% of the population.

There were 299 households out of which 29.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.5% were married couples living together, 4.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.4% were non-families. 29.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.31 and the average family size was 2.88.

In the village the population was spread out with 25.2% under the age of 18, 8.1% from 18 to 24, 24.3% from 25 to 44, 21.6% from 45 to 64, and 20.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 90.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.3 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $36,071, and the median income for a family was $42,434. Males had a median income of $30,625 versus $21,979 for females. The per capita income for the village was $15,900. About 2.5% of families and 4.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.9% of those under age 18 and 2.9% of those age 65 or over.

Local Government

The Village of Shelby is governed by a Board of Trustees. Municipal officials include a Board Chairperson and four Board members who are elected for a term of four years. Polk County has 14 townships and is governed by three county commissioners elected by popular vote for four-year terms.

The Village of Shelby is a member of the Mid-State Interlocal Communities. The communities of Shelby, Stromsburg, Gresham, Benedict, Hampton, Bradshaw, and Polk comprise the membership for the organization. The communities meet on a quarterly basis and are working toward further sharing of resources to improve operations and services to the communities.


The "Shelby Chamber of Commerce", the "Shelby Betterment Corporation", and the "Village of Shelby" work together for business and industrial development in the community. The Shelby Betterment Corporation, a non-profit organization, was organized in 1987 with 20 stockholders. The corporation has helped finance new business ventures within the community and attract new businesses. The corporation also strengthens the community through smaller projects.

There are many other organizations within the community that contribute to the quality of life in Shelby. These organizations are served by members of all ages.


The basic economic activities of Shelby include farming, cattle feeding, hog production and retailing.


Shelby Public School District

Shelby Public School District is located in the community of Shelby, which has a population of approximately 690 in East Central Polk County. The school district has a total population of 1,575 with a student population of 289. The district encompasses 104 square miles. The district operates one K-12 attendance center located in Shelby. Because of the area that the district covers, the school district operates four regular bus routes. Shelby Public Schools is a Class D1 school.

Pupil-Classroom Teacher Ratio: 2005-2006
*"General Education"
**Elementary 18 to 1
**Secondary 13 to 1
**Special Education Enrollment 26
**Title 1 Enrollment
**Average Class Size 14.45
**Elementary 19
**Secondary 23Average Daily Attendance (2005-2006)
*K-12 - Attendance Rate - 271 - 94%
*Graduation Rate - 95%

Educational Service Unit

Shelby participates in Educational Service Unit #7, which is headquartered in Columbus and serves seven counties.

Community College

Shelby is part of the Central Community College which encompasses 25 counties. The college is governed by an 11 member Board of Governors elected by the citizens of the area served. The college maintains administrative offices in Grand Island and operates campuses at Hastings, Columbus, and Grand Island as well as practical nursing programs at Grand Island, Kearney, and Columbus and Community Education Centers in 90 communities in the area.

The Platte Campus in Columbus, 25 miles north of Shelby, offers 35 vocational-technical programs and 13 academic transfer programs designed for transfer to four-year colleges. Campus enrollment during 1995-96 totaled 3,179 on-campus and generated 705 full-time equivalencies. Of that total, there are 564 full-time students and 7,829 part-time students. Off-campus students total 5,713 and generated 240 full-time equivalencies and non-credit reimbursable students total 654. Enrollment totals include more than 2,000 people who completed business, industrial, and professional training programs provided by the campus for local employers.


The Methodist Church was the first to be built, ringing its bell to call worshipers in 1883. In 1898 the Catholics completed their first church. A new Methodist Church was built in 1951.


The village of Shelby has one park approximately five acres in size. Facilities in the park include: two ball fields (dugouts, lighted, and electronic score boards), announcers building, brick concession stand, roofed shelter for grilling out, restrooms, swimming pool, sand volleyball, tennis court/basketball court, sheltered picnic area and playground.

The Shelby Park received new playground equipment as part of a renovation project designed to update the park and meet safety codes. The equipment is designed for children with skill levels of 5 to 12 years old.

A recreational bike/hike trail was constructed in the park. The concrete trail is 8 feet wide and lighted for use by bicyclists and pedestrians. Another segment of the trail, constructed in the summer of 2001, connects the school to the public library. This section is lighted and is 8 feet wide. The two segments will be connected in the future.

Summer recreation programs that Shelby offers include: Tee Ball, softball, baseball, soccer, and swimming. In the past Shelby has hosted the State Softball Tournaments, as well as several other tournaments.

Local area facilities:
*Boating - 27 miles away on Lake North
*Bowling - 8-lane bowling alley 7 miles away in Osceola
*Fishing - Private and State lakes in area
*Golf Course - 9-hole grass course with clubhouse 7 miles away in Osceola
*Hunting - pheasant, quail, deer, rabbit, fox, duck, turkey, and coyote
*Theaters - 25 miles away in Columbus
*Race Tracks - There are 2 stock car race tracks in the area;
**Butler County Motorplex
**U.S 30 Speedway Both are 1/3 mile clay oval racetracks that host IMCA Modifieds, Hobby Stock, Street Stock, along with various special events during the racing season.

Annual Events

*Hoop & Spike Fest in March
*Shelby Days (street dances, tractor pulls, free swimming, etc.)
*Co-ed Softball Tournaments during the summer
*Card Clubs (bridge, sheephead, pitch, pinnacle, eucher, and rummy).

Farm Heritage Days

In 1985 Farm Heritage Days was initiated. It was an annual event held on the first weekend in August, the event would bring large crowds to Shelby for the old tractor and machinery displays, demonstrations, and a parade. The last Farm Heritage Days event was held in the late 90's. Today Shelby has "Shelby Days" a Biennial event held over Memorial Day Weekend.

Local Media


Between 1926 and 1929, Dr. John Dunning and his father, built radio stations WCAJ and KGBY (which operated on the regular broadcast bands and were later sold.) and, using local talent, produced the town's only broadcasts.


* [ Polk County Newspaper / Shelby Sun]
* [ Columbus Telegram]

Notable Residents/Natives

*Charles Krumbach (1852-1917), Nebraska state senator from 1902-1914
*Theodore A. Kiesselbach (1884-1964), Agronomist, educator, author or co-author of over 140 articles, major developer of corn hybrids
*Terence Romaine von Duren (1907-1968), Aritst, Illustrator, popular regionalist painter from the 1940's through the 1960's
*John R. Dunning (1907–1975), Nuclear physicist, educator, pioneered the development of nuclear energy
*Howard Johansen (1910-1988), Founded Howard Cams, first to produce a forged aluminum rod for racing. Inducted into International Drag Racing Hall of Fame in 1991 & Nebraska Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2001.
*Arjay R. Miller (1916 -), Business and college executive, served as president of Ford Motor Company from 1963 to 1968, was dean of Graduate School of Business at Stanford University for ten years.
*Curtis Tomasevicz (1980-), 2006 U.S. Olympic Bobsledder, former Nebraska Cornhusker football player


External links

* [ Community Fast Facts Profile]
* [ Community GIS Information on Shelby, Nebraska]
* [ Shelby Public Schools]
* [ Shelby Census Population Characteristics]

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