Merrick County, Nebraska

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Merrick County is a county located in the U.S. state of Nebraska. As of 2000, the population was 8,204. Its county seat is Central City[1].

Merrick County is part of the Grand Island, Nebraska Micropolitan Statistical Area.

In the Nebraska license plate system, Merrick County is represented by the prefix 46 (it had the forty-sixth-largest number of vehicles registered in the county when the license plate system was established in 1922).



According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 495 square miles (1,281 km²), of which, 485 square miles (1,256 km²) of it is land and 10 square miles (26 km²) of it (1.99%) is water. It is also the most oddly shapped county in the United States.

Adjacent counties


Merrick County was formed in 1858. It was named for Elvira Merrick, the maiden name of the wife of territorial legislator Henry W. DePuy, who introduced the bill creating the county.[2]

When first formed, the county was bounded on the south by the Platte River, and by straight lines on the north, east, and west. It thus included 180 square miles (470 km2) of the Pawnee Reservation, established one year before the county. In 1873, the state legislature removed these reservation lands from the county, leaving it with a jagged northern border from which narrow panhandles extended northward from the northeast and northwest corners. In 1897, the Pawnee Reservation became Nance County.[3]

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