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Scotts Bluff, Nebraska

Tri-State Land Company

Tri-State Land Company
Tri-State Land Company
Rick Myers, Scottsbluff Star-Herald

Built in 1907, the Tri-State Land Company’s headquarters is the only remaining corporate building associated with this company that was so influential in the development of the region. The large one-and-one-half-story commercial building is on West Overland Street at the edge of the Scottsbluff business district. The building’s exterior and interior maintain a high degree of integrity, and the building is the only known example of the Dutch Colonial Revival Style in the region.

As an early private developer of irrigation, the Tri-State Land Company had a considerable impact on farming in the Scotts Bluff region. Among Tri-State’s most enduring influences was the introduction of the sugar beet. The company helped introduce the sugar beet on a large scale and encouraged its cultivation by growing the crop on company land. The sugar beet became one of western Nebraska’s most important cash crops. The beet helps generate income for a variety of groups. Today, by-products from sugar beet cultivation continue to serve as feed for western Nebraska cattle, and the Great Western Sugar Company, the major beet processing facility in the region, provides numerous jobs to area residents.

While irrigation was still in its infancy in western Nebraska, the Tri-State Land Company purchased an underdeveloped canal, increased its length, and restored it to its original purpose, allowing for increased agricultural production in the area. Tri-State owner and businessman, H.G. Leavitt, believed that irrigated beet farming opened other economic avenues for the region, and the company’s charter reflected that. The Tri-State Land Company invested in a number of other economic pursuits including building large sugar factories, creating larger canals, buying and selling vast tracts of land, and, in time, harnessing canal water energy to produce hydroelectricity. Though not all of Leavitt’s ideas came to fruition, the Tri-State Land Company had an enormous influence on building Scottsbluff.
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The Tri-State Land Company is located at 13 West Overland St., in Scottsbluff, NE. The building is currently a commercial property owned and operated by the Herstead Monument Company and is not open for tours.

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