Alexandria, Va., photographer Jeff Olson was one of those fortunate souls who was able to view Monday’s total solar eclipse. Jeff, who works for the National Park Service and has been stationed this summer in Grand Canyon National Park, traveled to Homestead National Monument of America near Beatrice, Neb., to view the once-in-a-lifetime event.
The national monument commemorates passage of the Homestead Act of 1862, which allowed any qualified person to claim up to 160 acres of federally owned land in exchange for five years of residence and the cultivation and improvement of the property. The act eventually transferred 270 million acres from public to private ownership.
The site of the national monument is on land that includes some of the first acres successfully claimed under the Homestead Act. The national monument was included in the National Register of Historic Place on Oct. 15, 1966.