Emerson is a village in Dakota, Dixon, and Thurston Counties in the U.S. state of Nebraska. Emerson was named after the poet Ralph Waldo Emerson. The population was 856 at the 2000 census. Emerson is the only community in Nebraska that lies in three counties. The Dakota and Dixon county portions of Emerson are part of the Sioux City, IA–NE–SD Metropolitan Statistical Area.