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“The Morton mansion is not to be missed”

Arbor Lodge State Historical Park
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Arbor Lodge in Nebraska City, Nebraska, was the home of the J. Sterling and Caroline Morton family. The four-room house built in 1855 was renovated over the years into a Victorian-style mansion. The 52-room mansion includes many Morton family Victorian and Empire-era furnishings. Guests may stroll the gardens and trails to view towering trees, many of which were planted by the Morton family. Arbor Lodge State Historical Park and Arboretum encompasses 72 acres of wooded area and gardens, with over 260 species of trees and shrubs.
Newton, Kansas
Level Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“The Morton mansion is not to be missed”
Reviewed August 11, 2011

Arbor Lodge is a small historical park, but the Morton Mansion located there provides a fascinating step back in time to assimilate the intersection of the pioneer spirit and the gilded age in America. The Tifffany glass skylight in the sun room of the mansion is worth the price of the modest admission. The room exhibits let you step back in time and feel the pride of the aristocratic Morton family. Interpretative signage in the rooms is very helpful. This is what beautiful historic preservation is all about, and we understood why it was featured on television as an example of classic American architecture.

Visited July 2011
5 Thank Flatlandcouple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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102 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Seattle, Washington
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Very nice parks in this town.”
Reviewed July 29, 2011

Nebraska City is home of Arbor Day plus is on the Lewis and Clark Trail. Although the Missouri River is flooding, the town and all services remain open and unaffected for tourists. This is in country with rolling hills, huge oak forests and river bluffs. It's hard to find better scenery. Friendly open people and lots to do and see here. We recommend a stop here for all ages.

Visited July 2011
Thank ffly1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
78 reviews
49 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 122 helpful votes
“A wonderful place to spend a weekend/afternoon!”
Reviewed July 14, 2008

This is a great excursion whether you are planning to stay at the Lied Lodge for the weekend or just stopping in for an afternoon. The Applejack Festival is the best time of year to go as there are craft booths, apple cider, parades, games, parties, contests activities, etc! If you do go to the festival, be sure you get there on a day that you can see the parade. And definitely get a ticket to go into the Wilderness Adventure! It is a great deal! You get to walk trails/see nature/and do activities (cross-cut sawing, hatchet throwing, etc). Without the Wilderness Adventure, you might get bored! But maybe not!

The J. Sterling Morton mansion is a great tour as well. You get to see the bowling alley in the basement, the printing press room, the bedrooms and bathrooms, the dining halls, etc...all preserved as they were when the Morton's lived there! Very interesting!

2 Thank Sara C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Grand Island, Nebraska
Level Contributor
14 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
“A step back in time”
Reviewed July 26, 2005

Arbor Lodge is a beautiful 52 room mansion built by J. Sterling Morton, the founder of Arbor Day. He was a newspaper man, a Territorial Governor, and Secretary of Agriculture under Grover Cleveland. His son Joy was head of the Morton Salt Company, Paul was Secretary of the Navy under Teddy Roosevelt, Carl was founder of Argo Cornstarch.

It was originally a four-room frame house built in 1855, and is thought to be the only frame house between the Missouri River and the Rocky Mountains at that time. J. Sterling and his wife Caroline added the other rooms onto the house while they were living in it.

We did not have a guided tour, but were allowed to visit the house on our own. Signs with details about the rooms/furniture/decorations are posted on the inside of each room. We were allowed to step just inside most rooms. It takes about an hour just to go through the house and there is a carriage house and hiking trails on the grounds. Several trees planted in the 1800's are still standing.

9 Thank gibby2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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