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Founded in 1873, David City is the county seat of Butler County, in the east-central part of Nebraska. After the March county election that selected its location for the county seat, the town site was platted in May of 1873. Mrs. Phoebe Davids Miles donated the land for the courthouse building, and the city was named for her father, William Davids. Originally named Davids City, the “s” was soon dropped, and David City is the only town in the world bearing that name. In 1877, the Union Pacific Railroad extended its line to the area, followed by the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad in 1880, and the Chicago & North Western line in 1887. The Burlington depot now serves as a museum, operated by the Butler County Historical Society. Joyce C. Hall, founder of Hallmark Cards, was born in David City, as was Ruth Etting, a torch singer who starred in the Ziegfield Follies during the 1920s.

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