Networking Nebraska!!

As a Nebraskan, I had to choose the project provided that analyzed the required postings of homesteaders in the state

UNL’s Homesteader Network

In this project, the network is made up of homesteaders and their witnesses(nodes) and their socio-legal relationship built off of the practice of witnessing(edges). Communities were made through use of modularity, which UNL says is a “community detection algorithm” created on Gephi. The size of nodes is representative of the in-degree of each person. The community aspect showed that each township developed approximately 8-9 distinct yet intersecting communities.

Through georeferencing witness networks using historic survey maps and the legal descriptions of the homestead claims, the group found that communities usually developed based on proximity and that central-Europeans exclusively witnessed for each other rather than integrating with the non-immigrant community already present.

Interactive maps of Custer and Dawes County are included on the site, but I was unable to open them.

Spooky Nuggets


  1. Another network that was created using Gephi! Even though the principles of this graph are relatively simple, Gephi does a nice job of presenting the important details in a network. I wonder if we will get to play with this tool- it looks like it is relatively user-friendly as it has pretty detailed documentation for use.

  2. Nice! I also looked at a website which used Gephi, and I am thrilled to learn about another website also using Gephi! I’m curious what the interactive maps of Custer and Dawes County would show, I should try downloading them and see if it opens on my computer.

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