Plains Historical Museum

Railroad History, Plains Memories and Native Americans

Kimball began as a railroad construction camp. Because of large herds of pronghorn in the area, the railroad called the new station Antelope, and the new village, Antelopeville. In 1885, the growing settlement was renamed for railroad executive Thomas Kimball. 

Kimball’s history is displayed downtown at the Plains Historical Museum.

After oil was discovered in Kimball County in 1950, Kimball became known as the “Oil Capital of Nebraska.” It soon had another title – “Missile Center, U.S.A.” The area’s first Atlas missile site was completed in 1961. Today, some 200 Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles are housed in the tri-state area. 

For more information on Kimball, contact the Kimball/Banner County Chamber of Commerce on (308) 235-3782  or visit