If there’s a heart to the sprawling body of Nebraska Literature, it’s quietly beating in the Heritage Room. – Ted Kooser

The Nebraska Literary Heritage Association’s mission is to “encourage the collection, preservation, and promotion of work by and about Nebraska authors through support of the Lincoln City Libraries special collection, the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors, and to foster the creation and appreciation of this literature through programs, collaborative partnerships, and the use of technology.”

Lincoln City Libraries staff began developing this special collection in 1949. It was moved to its present location on the third floor of Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln, Nebraska, in 1978 and was supported by city funding until 1981.

When city funding was eliminated, due to fiscal constraints, the Junior League of Lincoln formed the Nebraska Authors Project to provide continued support for the growing collection.
The Nebraska Literary Heritage Association (NLHA) grew out of this project.
NLHA was established in 1983 under the auspices of the Foundation for Lincoln City Libraries.

NLHA provides financial and programming support for the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors. The room currently houses more than 13,000 volumes representing more than 4,000 authors. Financial support comes from membership dues and from the Spelling Bee (begun in 1984). The Foundation for Lincoln City Libraries administers the Heritage Room Endowment Fund which contains funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant (1989) and funds deposited by NLHA. Money raised by NLHA helps maintain public access to the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors collection and supports NLHA programs.  NLHA membership news is published in
The Bookmark, the Foundation for Lincoln City Libraries newsletter.

Programs sponsored by NLHA include the Writers Write workshop for 8th graders, the Lunch at the Library programs, and the Read to Me programs in elementary schools. All are designed to encourage an interest in reading and writing and to further knowledge and understanding of Nebraska authors.

Since 1988, NLHA has sponsored the Literary Heritage Award, currently presented at the annual Spelling Bee. This award recognizes a writer or a group that promotes excellence in writing and literature in Nebraska.

Membership in NLHA is open to anyone interested in supporting Nebraska authors.
Click here to join us!



Bring your lunch and enjoy coffee provided by The Mill!  Programs begin at 12:10pm in the 4th Floor Auditorium

Bennett Martin Public Library, 136 S. 14th Street, Lincoln, NE.

Sponsored by the Nebraska Literary Heritage Association, support group for the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors

For more information, call 402.441.8516; email:



The John Ames Reading Series, begun in 1985, showcases Nebraska authors reading their own works. This series is  provided by Lincoln City Libraries and held in the the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors.

Recent programs are available on demand through 5 CITY-TV at  Program DVDs are available for check-out and inter-library loans.

For more information, call 402.441.8516; email:


32nd Annual Spelling Bee


As far back as 1949, the Reference Department of Lincoln City Libraries realized the importance of gathering information specific to Nebraska authors, and what began as a single shelf of books has grown into a room-sized collection — the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors.

The Heritage Room preserves and promotes works by and about Nebraska authors, past and present, with the goal of housing them in one location.

The Heritage Room contains much more than books — information files, photographs, audio and videocassettes, compact discs, artwork, and other memorabilia reflecting Nebraska’s rich literary tradition are also available.

Its namesake, Jane Pope Geske (1919-1999), was a founding member of the Nebraska Literary Heritage Association. She tirelessly worked to bring people and books together.


The Nebraska Literary Heritage Association’s mission is to encourage the collection, preservation, and promotion of works by and about Nebraska authors through support of the Heritage Room and to foster the creation and appreciation of this literature through programs, collaborative partnerships, and the use of technology. To join, please visit


Marcia Dority Baker, Marty Eischeid, Molly Fisher, Janet Hyde, Jenni Jex (chair), Wendy Johnson, Donna Marvin, Meredith McGowan, Nancy Swetland, and Bonnie Williams.


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 #         Name                                      Sponsor(s)

  1. Jim Seiler                Gail McNair & Seiler Bros.
  2. Janeen Ward          Self & Johnson Siblings
  3. Joy Shiffermiller    Self & Johnson Siblings
  4. Aimee Allard          UNL English Department
  5. Wally Seiler            Self & Seiler Bros.
  6. Jerry Seiler             Self & Seiler Bros.
  7. Tom McGowan      Meredith McGowan
  8. Jim Johnson          Self & Johnson Siblings
  9. Stuart Stofferahn  Wendy Johnson
  10. Brian Mason          Wendy Johnson
  11. Kathryn Brockmeier      Molly Fisher
  12. Greg Brockmeier   Kathryn Brockmeier
  13. Nate Taylor            Nancy Swetland
  14. Jeff Hines               Self
  15. Richard Miller       Self
  16. Tracy Tibbels         Pat Leach
  17. Kolette Satterfield         LCL Staff Association
  18. Allan Eurek           Self
  19. Scout Richters      Judy Garlock
  20. Larry Day              Day Clan
  21. Kyle Fischer          Marty Eischeid
  22. JD Flynn                Self
  23. Jeff Johnson         Self


Year         Winning Contestant   Winning Word

  • 2016  Tom McGowan                 cachou
  • 2015 Larry Day & Aimee Allard (tie)
  • 2014 Larry Day                            duopsony
  • 2013 Priscilla Handy                   wattage
  • 2012 Brad Bossung                     trichinosis
  • 2011 Aubrey Mathews                hectocotylus
  • 2010 Brent Mehling                    capriccio
  • 2009 Larry Day                            chlorella
  • 2008 Julia Doerr                          isinglass
  • 2007 Michael Cartwright            (unknown)
  • 2006 Brent Mehling                    anodyne
  • 2005 Larry Day                            zebu
  • 2004 Brian Bornstein                  adamantine
  • 2003 Rod Confer                         oubliette
  • 2002 Brian Bornstein                  pellucid
  • 2001 (not held)                            (not held)
  • 2000 Tex Richters                       picayune
  • 1999 George Day                         helical
  • 1998 Donald McGinley              chicanery
  • 1997 Kathryn Bellman                eiderdown
  • 1996 Larry Day                            bifurcate
  • 1995 Francois Neville                imbrication
  • 1994 Bill Regier                           cacophonous
  • 1993 Judy Sing                            hegemony
  • 1992 Maureen Hutfless               samite
  • 1991 Bob Gibson                         brougham
  • 1990 Ann Gillis                           antependium
  • 1989 Vaughn Border                   monstrous
  • 1988 Mary White                        ossification
  • 1987 Donald McGinley              arcanum
  • 1986 Deb Pearson                      pyorrhea
  • 1985 Kathleen Rutledge             balalaika
  • 1984 Sydney Lynch                    parallelepiped



(They deserve a really big pat on the back!)

John Baylor -Twelve Time Event Emcee

Scott Stewart -Bee-terfly Artist

Rod Wagner & Nebraska Library Commission

Pat Leach & Lincoln City Libraries

Gail McNair & Foundation for Lincoln City Libraries

Barbara Hansen

Kathy Jeune

Erin Willis

Chocolatier Blue -4101 Pioneer Woods Dr, Lincoln

Korn Popper – 1417 N St, Lincoln

Le Cupcake – 5563 S 48th St, Lincoln

Le Quartier – 6900 O St Ste 132, Lincoln

Licorice International – 803 Q St Ste 300, Lincoln

Lincoln Olive Oil Shop – 201 N 7th St Ste 108, Lincoln

Meadowlark Coffee & Espresso – 1624 South St, Lincoln

Nothing Bundt Cakes – 4107 Pioneer Woods Dr Ste 102, Lincoln

Single Barrel Chop House & Whiskey Bar – 130 N 10th St, Lincoln


Spelling Bee Emcee: John Baylor

 Spelling Bee Judges:

Marcia Dority Baker – NLHA

Barbara Jacobson – FLCL

Layne Pierce – LCL


Betty Bogus – Embroidered Bee Tea Towels

Butterfly Bakery – One Dozen Cupcakes

Jane Cech – Bumble Bee Door Decor

Lacey Losh – Signed Copy of Libraries Around the World

Jon Nelson – Poets Like Oysters, Last Poems by Barbara Gibbs

Bob Ripley & Stacy James – $100 Gift Certificate to Capitol Gift Shop

Karen Shoemaker – Signed Copy of The Meaning of Names

Scott Stewart – Hand Colored Bee-terfly Print

RK Vetter – Signed Copy of Sharley’s Lessons

Andrew Willis – Mangiamiele Gift Set


Thanks to their generous contributions and donations, this year’s spelling bee has been brought to you by…

  • A Attorneys at Cline Williams, L.L.P.  233 S 13th St, Lincoln, (402) 474-6900
  • B Brody, Bailey, Barrett, & Brady Jex
  • C Chiropractor Matthew Horak, D.C. 1640 Normandy Ct Ste B, Lincoln, (402) 904-7179
  • D Dentist Craig Vacek, D.D.S. 343 N Cotner Blvd, Lincoln, (402) 466-1914
  • E Elivette & Elyse Wagner
  • F Footloose & Fancy | Threads 4131 Pioneer Woods Dr, Lincoln, (402) 488-6119 1219 P St, Lincoln, (402) 476-6119
  • G Gail’s Grandsons | Gail McNair
  • H Husker Hives | Nate Lueders, Owner
  • I Irresistible! Simply Amaizen Popcorn & Snacks 4451 N 26th St Ste 950, Lincoln, (402) 904-5263
  • J John Baylor Prep   (402) 475-PREP,
  • K Klaus & Gisela Hartmann
  • L Learning, Literacy, & Literature Lady Leach, Library Lover
  • M Madeleine Hollis Tom & Meredith McGowan’s New Granddaughter
  • N NAQS Environmental Experts 301 S 9th St Ste 200, Lincoln, (402) 310-5321
  • O omt! divine women’s resale 1725 Van Dorn St, Lincoln, (402) 423-2066
  • P Press Box Sports Bar & Grille 5601 S 56th St, Lincoln, (402) 261-3859
  • Q Queen Bee Molly Fisher
  • R Rod & Diane Wagner
  • S Scott Stewart The Bee-terfly Artist
  • T Tico’s Foods of Mexico 317 S 17th St, Lincoln, (402) 475-1048
  • U Utahans Kent & Terri Jex
  • V Veterinarian Judy Mulder, D.V.M. 1715 Van Dorn Ste B, Lincoln, (402) 423-5550
  • W Willis Family – Andrew, Erin, & Kids
  • X Rex & Joy Walton
  • Y Yarn Shop 5221 S 48th St Ste 6, Lincoln, (402)489-9550   (Courtesy of Dan & Donna Marvin)
  • amaZing, anonymous donor!