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City of Friend



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Friend (a community of 1,027 people) is located on historic Route 6, twelve miles south of I-80 in Southeast Nebraska's Saline County.  Besides farming and livestock, Friend includes retail sales and manufacturing.  A public 9-hole golf course and country club are located on the East side of town.  There is also a hospital, K-12 school, and municipal pool.  And many church denominations are represented.  Welcome to Friend, Nebraska, where there are miles of smiles!

Friendville was founded in 1870 by Mr. Charles E. Friend. In 1869 he left his home in Illinois and in the spring of 1870 he homesteaded the land where Friend is now located. He worked in Lincoln as a store clerk but later in 1870 he took an assortment of dry goods and returned to his hometown where he established and operated a flourishing dry goods store for many years.

The Burlington and Missouri River Railroad reached Friend in 1871.  The town at that time was no more than the homestead of Charles E. Friend.  The government established a post office naming Mr. Friend as its first postmaster.  he generously donated land for a school and church.

The year of 1873 was one of rapid growth.  Work was completed on the railroad station and it was renamed "Friend" by the railroad.  The town was surveyed and settlement began to take the shape of a frontier town.  Fifty-six acres of Charles Friend's land was laid out on a square containing 16 square blocks.  Trees were planted on most of the lots.  Mr. Bigford opened a blacksmith shop, and flour mills were erected on Turkey Creek because of its water power.  Late in 1873, Charles Fischer built a one-story hotel.  The boom continued and the population increased.  Several stores and a lumberyard were opened.

Friend received special honors in 1983 by being named a "Tree City, U.S.A."  The community of Friend upholds a process of continuous improvement.