Omaha History Department Office
History of Omaha, NE
Omaha's rich and varied history is a testament to its modernity. Omaha, Nebraska was named the "Gateway to the West" in 1854 because of its location at the Missouri River crossing. The population of Omaha skyrocketed after the Union Pacific Railroad selected Omaha as its primary western terminus in 1867. Omaha was a major cattle-marketing hub and its stockyards and meat-processing facilities played an important role in the growth of the local economy. Omaha's proximity to rail transport has allowed it to grow its industrial base.
Omaha ( OH-mə-hah) is the largest city in the U.S. state of Nebraska and the county seat of Douglas County. Omaha is in the Midwestern United States on the Missouri River, about 10 mi (15 km) north of the mouth of the Platte River. The nation's 39th-largest city, Omaha's 2020 census population was 486,051.Omaha is the anchor of the eight-county, bi-state Omaha-Council Bluffs metropolitan area. The Omaha Metropolitan Area is the 58th-largest in the United States, with a population of 967,604. The Omaha-Council Bluffs-Fremont, NE-IA Combined Statistical Area (CSA) totaled 1,004,771, according to 2020 estimates.