|This large and wealthy county is
situated in the Red River Valley, on the 48th parallel
of north latitude which intersects it about thirteen
miles south of the north line. It is the second county
north from Cass and bounded as follows: North by Walsh,
south by Traill and Steele, east by the Red River which
separates it from the State of Minnesota, and west by
The principal streams, after the Red River, are the south branch of the Forest River, which passes across the northwest corner of the county; Turtle River, which drains the bulk of the northern and central parts of the county; and the numerous head-waters of Goose River, all discharging in the Rid River of the North.
The eastern portion of the county, over a broad belt extending to an average distance of twenty miles westward from the Red River, may be designated as a vast level plain, having everywhere the deep, rich alluvial soil for which the Red River Valley has become famous, and generally considered the best wheat-growing lands in America. This region is destitute of timber, with the exception of narrow belts along the Red and Turtle rivers. Bayous and small lake and marshes farther inland. The southeastern portions of the county are mostly destitute of running streams.
Beginning in Town 150 north, Range 53 west, is a series of low, parallel ridges, composed of clay, gravel and occasionally bowlders, extending in a northwest direction nearly parallel with the Red River to the banks of the Forest River, near the north line of the county. This region is often quite rough and broken, and better adapted to grazing than general farming.
To the west of this system of hills and ridges extends a broad, level region, known as the Elk Valley, reaching to the foot of the terrace region which rises to the grand plateau in the west. This valley averages perhaps ten miles in width, and has a splendid soil. In this valley, south of and adjoining the town of Larimore, is the celebrated "Elk Valley Farm," containing many thousand acres and valued with its improvements at $1,000,000. Along the banks of Turtle River in this region are considerable bodies of timber, and the Forest River has also a valuable belt of timber along its margin.
The two western ranges of towns, 55 and 56, extend in the region rising toward the plateau, and are broken more or less by hills and ravines. They are well watered by the numerous head branches of the Goose and Turtle rivers. Two considerable lakes are situated in Lakeville Township.
SETTLEMENT -The first incident in any way connected with settlement of Grand Forks County was the attempt of Captain Anson Northrop, of St. Anthony, to cross the lowlands between the head waters of the Red and Minnesota rivers in a steamer, while they were flooded by annual spring freshnets. It was in 1858, and he was unfortunate enough to get stranded on a mud bar, and when the water went down in the latter part of the season, the steamer Anson Northrop lay high and dry upon the prairies of western Minnesota. The Hudson Bay Company purchased his machinery and removed it to Georgetown, Minn., and there built the old International, the ruins of which lie at the Grand Forks levee.
This "accident" provided a means of transportation on the Red River from the inhabited portion of it on the south to the northern part, toward which immigration had begun to turn. Freight began to be shipped to Manitoba via the Red River of the North, and the river men of the south began to realize that there must be something in it. During these years Messrs., Hill, Griggs & Co. were operating a warehouse I St. Paul, through which much of the freight consigned to this country was shipped. And this brought the valley to the more particular notice of James J. Hill, now President of the St. P. M. & M. Ry. Co., and in 1869 he made a trip on dog-sleds from St. Paul to Winnipeg, following the trail made by Messrs., Loon and Hoffman from Fort Abercrombie to Winnipeg. Upon his return to St. Paul, he sent Captain Alexander Griggs, the practical river man of the firm, to examine the Red River and decide what kind of a boat to build.
In 1870, Captain Griggs built a flatboat at Fort Abercrombie, and floated down the river on an exploring tour. At many points along the river he was favorably impressed with the outlook for a future town; but when he reached the confluence of the Red and Red Lake rivers, he hauled his boat to shore and erected a log hut, claiming the land under the unwritten but mighty law of "squatter’s rights," which he subsequently re-affirmed by actual entry under the homestead law, by which he obtained title from the Government. Upon his arrival here he found the first man’s settlement in the county, which consisted of the log hut of Nicholas Hoffman and August Loon, the old mail carriers on the Pembina and Abercrombie route, who had settled in 1868, and who were the first residents of Grand Forks County.
Returning overland to Fort Abercrombie, he built the steamer, Selkirk, which is now plying on the Red River, under his management. She was launched on April 23, 1871, and steamed down the river immediately. It was afterward found to be neither practicable nor profitable to run so far south, however, and Frog’s Point, in this county, became the head of navigation.
In 1871, the Northern Pacific Railroad was completed to Moorhead, Minn., and to give an overland passage for tourists and immigrants who had begun at that early day to come up into this country, Carpenter & Blakikie established a stage line from Moorhead to Winnipeg. Fright was carried to the boats at Frog’s Point, while passengers were carried the entire distance. This led to the enlargement of the population of the county, as well as the number of settlements. Stations were established at convenient points for the care of passengers and horses. The stations which were established that year were as follows:
In this year the Grand Forks post office was established, which was the first one in the county, in which there were at that time not thirty inhabitants.
In the fall of 1871, the county was connected with the outside world by a telegraph line, constructed by the Government from Pembina to St. Paul.
From the records of and old settlers’ society, formed some years ago, the following list of old settlers is taken:
Following is a list of the post offices which have been established in the county, of which there are twenty-two; Adler, Arvilla, Belleville, Gilby, Grand Forks, Inkster, Johnstown, Larimore, Lee, Manvel, Northwood, Pilot, Reno, Reynolds, Strabane, Thompson, Turtle River, Walle, Aneta, Petersburgh, Niagara, and Ojata. The following are railroad stations: Arvilla, Grand Forks, Larimore, Manvel, Reynolds, Thompson, Niagara, and Ojata.
The early settlement was slow and confined to a very small area. The development since 1880 has been both rapid and general. The plats of the towns of Arvilla, Ojata, and Larimore were placed on file in 1882, from the western part of the county, and Manvel in the northern part, and Norton and Reynolds in the south. Niagara was settled in 1883.
Ojata, which was formerly called Stickney, is situated about eleven miles from Grand Forks, and has a population of about 200. It has tow elevators, several hotels and boarding-houses, and six or eight general stores. The country surrounding it is well settled up, and largely under cultivation.
Arvilla is located ten and on-half miles west of Ojata and has a population of about 150. It boasts of one of the finest hotels in the Northwest, and draws largely upon the surrounding country for its support.
Norton and Reynolds in the southern part of the county are small settlements forming convenient supply stations for the farmers near them. Manvel, to the north, has a population of about 100, and three or four general stores and a number of dwellings.
ORGANIZATION -Under the organic act which created the Territory of Dakota the county of Grand Forks comprised in addition to its present territory the eastern half of Nelson and southern half of Walsh counties. It also originally formed portions of the old counties of Kitson and Chippewa. At the time its boundaries were first established the inhabitants were entirely Indians and half-breeds, and there were but a few of them.
The first attempt at county organization was made in 1873, when Governor Birbank appointed George B. Winship, O. S. Freeman and Ole Thompson a board of County Commissioners. Of this organization o official record remains, as they transacted no business, there not being enough inhabitants in the county at that time to warrant the appointment of county officers. Mr. Winship says that he does not believe there were seventy-five white men in all of Grand Forks County.
In 1874, it was organized by the Governor, who appointed D. P. Reeves, Alex Griggs, and George A. Wheeler, County Commissioners. This board met at the residence of D. P. Reeves, in Grand Forks, on the 2nd day of March, 1875, at seven o’ clock, P. M. Messrs., David P. Reeves, and George A. Wheeler were present and organized by the election of D. P. Reeves, Chairman.
The county officers, who had been appointed previously, then presented the required bonds, as follows: James Elton, Register of Deeds; Nicholas Hoffman, Sheriff; Thomas Walsh, Treasurer and Judge of Probate; Thomas Walsh, D. P. Reeves, Justice of the Peace. Thomas Campbell and James Milligan were appointed Constables, and O. S. Freeman, District Attorney, but failed to qualify; George A. Wheeler, Superintendent of Schools. The appointment of a coroner was deferred.
The next question considered was that of school districts, and after some discussion the county was divided into two districts, the northern half being District No. 1, and the southern half District No. 2. The liquor license was then fixed at $40 dollars per year, which was subsequently raised to $50. This was the work of the first board of commissioners of Grand Forks County at their first meeting.
The first tax levied on property in this county was ordered March 25, 1875, and was a five mill tax for current expenses. On this day also the first jail for the county was ordered, and on April 16, a two mill tax was levied for it construction. The nearest paper at that time was Fargo Times, published eighty-five miles from Grand Forks, and in this paper the county commissioners’ proceedings were published until the establishment of the Plaindealer at Grand Forks.
On July 5, the commissioners met as a board of equalization for the first time, and righted the wrongs incident to all assessments. At this meeting they fixed the salary of the county clerk at $200 per year, out of which he was to pay his own office rent.
September 16, 1875, was the date of the first action in regard to elections, when the county was divided into precincts as follows: Precinct No. 1, Townships 149 and 150, Ranges 49, 50, 51 and 52 polls to be open at the residence of Eric Anderson; Precinct No. 2, Townships 151, 152, and 153, Ranges 50, 51 and 52 polls to be open at the school house; Precinct No. 3, Townships 154, 155 and 156, Ranges 51 and 52 polls to be open at he residence of Thomas Campbell.
The following gentlemen were appointed as Judges of Election: Precinct No. 1, Erick Anderson, Frank Lambert, and Knud Ronen; Precinct No. 2, E. B. Andrus, Nels. P. Olsen and George Ames; Precinct No. 3, Thomas C. Campbell, Duncan McMillan and James McCaffrey.
On Monday, October 2, another precinct was added, comprising Townships 149 and 150, Ranges 54, 55, and 56.
At the first regular meeting in October, the board divided the county into commissioner districts, as follows: District No. 1, all the land lying between the north boundary of the county and the township line common to 151 and 152; thence west to the western boundary of the county.
District No. 2, all the land between the southern boundary of District No. 1 and the section line common to Sections 3 and 10, in Township 151, Range 50, extending west to the boundary of the county.
District No. 3, all the land between the southern boundary of District No. 2 and the southern boundary of the county, and west to the western boundary line of the county.
On February 28, 1881, by a special act passed over the Governor’s veto, the Territorial Legislature divided the county anew, and its commissioner districts as they now stand are a follows: District No. 1, Townships 149, 150, of Ranges 50, 51, and 52; District No. 2, Townships 151 and 152, Ranges 50 and 51; District No. 3, Township 152, Range 52, and Townships 153, 154, 155 and 156, of Ranges 50, 51, and 52; District No. 4, Township 151, Range 52, and Townships 149, 150, 151 and 152, of Ranges 53, 54, and 55, and west to the county line; District No. 5, Townships 153, 154, 155 and 156, of Ranges 53, 54, and 55, and west to the county line.
The Legislature appointed the commissioners already elected, to represent the First, Second and Third districts, and designated W. G. Williams, from the Fourth District, and Robert Warren from the Fifth, to hold until the time of the fall election. The Legislature also set off the southern half of Walsh County, and in 1883 the eastern half of Nelson. This reduced the size of the county so that, at present, it is bounded on the north by the north boundary of Townships 154, on the east by the Red River, on the south by the twelfth standard parallel, and on the west by the west line of Range 56.
The organized townships in the county at present are as follows: Township 154, Range 51, Turtle River; 154, Range 52, Levant; 154, Range 53, Milan; 154, Range 54, Strabane; 154, Range 55, Inkster; 154, Range 56. Elkmount; Township 153, Ranges 50 and 51, Ferry; 153, Range 52, Lakeville; 153, Range 53, Gilby; 153, Range 54, unorganized; 153, Range 55, Agnes; 153, Range 56, Oakwood; Township 152, Range 50, Falconer; 152, Range 51, Rye; 152, Range 52, Blooming; 152, Range53, Mekinock; 152, Range 54, Hegton; 152, Range 55, Elm Grove; 152, Range56, Niagara; Township 151, Range 50, Grand Forks; 151, Range 51, Brenna; 151, Range 52, Oakville; 151, Ranges 53 and 54, Chester; 151, Ranges 55 and 56, Larimore; Township 150, Ranges 49 and 50, Walle; 150, Ranges 51 and 52, and 149, Range 52, Allendale; 150, Range 53, Pleasant View; 150, Range 54, Avon; 150, Range 55, unorganized; 150, Range 56, unorganized; Township 149, Range 49, Bentru; 149, Range 50, Americus; 149, Range 51, Michigan; 149, Range 58, Washington; 149, Range 54, Northwood; 149, Range 55, Lind; 149, Range 56, unorganized.
The following election returns of the vote taken in the fall of 1882, will show, perhaps better than anything else, the proportion of inhabitants in each township: Americus, 30; West Chester, 71; East Chester, 61; Niagara, 19; Northwood, 43; Strabane, 22; Ferry, 62; Walle, 43; Turtle River, 38; Deer Lake, 103; Township 150, Range 55, 16; Township 149, Range 55, 23; Township 153, Range 59, 33; Larimore, 106; Rye, including Falconer, 36; Agnes, 26; Inkster, 26; Lakeville, 17; Grand Forks Township, 21; Oakville, 61; Pleasant View, 20; Adler, 6; Washington, 22; Bentru, 28; Milan, 12; Brenna, 14; Elm Grove, 18; Mekinock, 18; Belleville, 30; Allendale, 50; Avon, 17; Blooming, 54; Gilby, 29; Levant, 7; 149, Range 61, 16; Grand Forks, 573. Total, 1,778.
The present officers of the county are Wm. G. Williams, James Duckworth, John Scott, Matt McGinness and D. C. Allen, County Commissioners; John P. Bray, Auditor; Thos. Walsh, Register of Deeds; E. C. Elwood, O. E. Tharaldson, Treasurers; James A. Jenks, Sheriff; A. W. Bangs, Attorney; Alex Oldham, Surveyor; Dr. Milo Scott, Coroner, all of Grand Forks, and C. A. Burton, of Mekinock, Superintendent of Schools.
The present court house, which is a substantial brick building, was built in 1879 at a cost of about $10,000, and contains, in addition to a large and spacious court-room, convenient and roomy offices for the transaction of county business and the storage of records and papers.
The new jail, now in process of erection, is an imposing structure composed of brick, mortar, iron, and steel, and will comprise all the latest improvements for the safe keeping and proper care of criminals, and when completed will cost nearly $15,000.
The county buildings are located at Grand Forks, the county seat, where all business of a public nature is transacted, and where the legal business is all transacted.
The soil in this county is a dark, rich loam, with a subsoil of clay. The top soil varies in depth from a fool and a half to three feet. The county contains something more than 936,000 acres, over 900,000 of which are held by agriculturists, and coming under cultivation as fast as they can be reached. There were never any land grants or public sales in this county, so that there are no large tracts held by speculators, and there is but one farm in the county of large size. For several years the farmers raised nothing but wheat, but now they are turning their attention to other small grains, as well as vegetables.
It has been shown by actual experiment, that vegetables produce well; and oats and barley give almost incredible yields. This county is pre-eminently an agricultural one, and towns and villages are springing up where market facilities are required, and supplies can be advantageously furnished the farmer. Manufactured goods are all shipped in from the east at present.
The land has been mostly taken under the Homestead, Pre-emption or Timber Culture acts of Congress, and is in the main held by actual residents. Before 1881 the county of Grand Forks was in the Pembina land district, but in that year a Land Office was established at Grand Forks, in which district the county now is. The land, as soon as surveyed, is put upon the market, and opened to settlement. The following table shows the amount of land which came upon the market at various times, and comprises the entire county.
May 8, 1874, 14 complete townships; May 8, 1874, 6 half townships, 17; January 13, 1877, 2; May 20, 1878, 2; May 11, 1878, 2; May 21, 1878, 4; May 11, 1881, 9; May 12, 1881, 5. Total number of townships, 41.
There is not a quarter section, at present, which is available for agricultural purposes that is not filed upon.
The altitude of this county above the sea is estimated at 800 feet and the climate in winter is rigorous and sometimes severe. The atmosphere is dry and dampness is the exception. In winter the frost penetrates the earth to a depth of from eight to twelve feet, and at the latter depth it is often found in July and August. In dry seasons this occasions enough moisture in thawing, to keep the grain growing until it has reached a growth sufficient to shade the roots from the sun, and the heavy dews of the cold nights incident to this climate all through the year, step in and do their share, so that a system of vegetation is possible with but little rain, and indeed, experience has shown that the danger is from a superfluous amount of water, rather than a deficiency. Irrigation is in no case necessary, but artificial drainage has been found advantageous in all cases.
The county has an excellent system of natural drainage. The Red River, bounding it on the east, is its great sewer, all the land sloping toward it. In the west of the county is hilly, and the water shed is traversed by ravines and "coulees", as they are called in the local vernacular, which are nothing more than sink holes in the prairie, which in turn, empty into sloughs, which form ponds, and in some cases, considerable lakes. These empty into the rivers.
The Goose River is the outlet for the southern part, and empties into the Red River at Caledonia, in Traill County. The Forest and Turtle rivers drain the northern part, and empty into the Red River north of Grand Forks.
While Grand Forks is a plain, with no apparent slope, this drainage system is so perfect as to effectually prevent floods; but there is much land which this does not reach directly enough, and the county is now being put in better shape each year by the artificial drains which individuals are constructing through or around their farms.
CITY OF GRAND FORKS
The early history of the city of Grand Forks is co-incident with that of the county, in as much as it was the only settled point for miles around, up to the year 1880.
In the winter of 1871-72, a young boy in the employ of Captain McCormack made a pencil sketch of the settlement, which is pronounced by those who have seen both the original and the picture, to be complete and accurate. It shows ten buildings, viz.; Captain Griggs’ residence, stable and claim shanty; McCormack, Griggs & Walsh’s store and saw mill; John Fadden’s residence, stable and saloon, and the steamboat boarding house and carpenter shop.
The population at this time was thirty-three. The saw mill of McCormack, Griggs & Walsh made this a desirable point for boat building, and in 1871, Commodore N. W. Kitttson, of the Hudson Bay Company, established a boat yard here under the management of D. P. Reeves. He built and launched the "Dakota" which is still plying on the Red River. The year 1882 was marked by no other event than the location of the shipyard, and at the close of the year 1873 more ship carpenters came in, and more boats were built. At he close of 1873 the population was not far from one hundred, and the business institutions numbered three.
In November, 1873 the Hudson Bay Company bought the store and saw mill, and erected a fine store building, which still occupies the lot next to the Citizen’s National Bank on Third street.
In the spring of 1874 the Hudson Bay Company erected the present Northwestern Hotel, which was in those days a palace of magnificence and an ocean of room. It was the largest building in the county, if not in the northern half of the Territory.
This quiet little frontier hamlet flourished and grew without adequate transportation facilities, and as has already been stated, out of the necessities of the case grew the Red River Transportation Company.
This year 1874 was a quiet one, the business interests just about holding their own, and at the close of the year the population was about 160.
Early in 1875 a few of the settlers got together in one of the room in the Northwestern Hotel, and in a few minutes secured $465 and pledges for work, so that in less than three weeks they had a school house completed, in which Rev. Mr. Curle, a minister of the Methodist Church taught the children of the community.
In June, 1875, Hon. George H. Walsh published the first copy of the Plaindealer, which has long since become a leading daily paper. The paper was then about the size of an ordinary letter sheet, and the work upon it was all done by Mr. Walsh. He issued from 300 to 1,00 copies weekly. This was the second paper established in the northern part of the Territory.
On October 26, 1875, Captain Griggs filed a plat of the original town, comprising ninety acres of his claim. At this time the population was something over 200.
The village grew quietly during the next tow years, and on May 30, 1878, Mr. F. Viets filed an addition to the original plat.
In 1878 the village was organized by act of Legislature, and under the charter Hon. George H. Walsh was elected President, R. W. Cutts, Clerk, and W. H. Brown, John McRae, William Budge and Frank Viets, Trustees. The population was then about 450. On October 16, 1878, Walter J. S. Traill platted an addition to the city.
At this time the surrounding country was becoming settled, and considerable grain was growing, which of course made more mercantile business in the village, and it growth was steady if not rapid.
In 1879 the St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba Railway showed undoubted signs of an early entrance into the city, and trade, immigration, and consequent growth, improved materially. People came in from all quarters, and the surrounding land was rapidly taken up.
G. H. Walsh was re-elected President, R. W. Cutts, Clerk, and M. L. McCormack, Frank Viets, John McRae, and Newton Porter were elected Trustees.
On January 1, 1880, the long expected and anxiously looked for railroad reached Grand Forks, and it was indeed a gala day. The population had grown to 1,200, and was rapidly increasing. New buildings were erected, and new people came in, until in June, the United States census returns showed a population of 1,800. Elevators for the receipt and shipment of wheat were erected, and farmers came here to sell their wheat and buy their supplies. Four additions were placed upon the market in that year, as follows: Alex. Griggs, July 1; M. L. McCormack, August 12; Budge & Eshelman, October 1; and McKelvey & Holcomb, October 27.
On February 22, 1881, Grand Forks was incorporated as a city, with W. H. Brown, Mayor, and the following members of the Common Council: Frank Viets and John Fadden, first ward; James Elton and A. L. Linton, second ward; A. Abrahamson and H. Gotzian, third ward; Newton Porter and Thomas White, fourth ward; Charles Freeman and E. Maloney, fifth ward; C. E. Teel and M. L. McCormack, sixth ward.
The city is divided into six wards.
The people of the city elect a Mayor and a Common Council, who appoint an attorney, a clerk, a treasurer, a marshal, a civil engineer, a chief of the fire department, and assessor and a treasurer.
The salaries as fixed at that time were as follows: Clerk, $300 per year; assessor, $200 per year; attorney, $300 per year; marshal, $900 per year; assistant marshal, $750 per year; treasurer, $100 per year; engineer, $6.50 per day while actually employed.
In April, 1881, the St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba Railway reached the city with its line from the south, giving a quicker and more direct communication with the east.
In the fall of 1881 the erection of a commodious brick school house was commenced, which was completed at an expense of about $35,000.
In 1881 settlements sprung up all over the county, which naturally drew on Grand Forks fir supplies, and thus a wholesale trade commenced and grew, until now, the city does a large amount during the year. At the close of 1881 the population had reached about 3,000.
In 1882 the growth of the city was much more rapid and substantial than ever before. Old business enterprises enlarged and new ones came in.
The Grand Forks Roller Mills were started in August, furnishing a good market for a large amount of grain. The capital stock of the milling company, of which M. L. McCormack is president and general manager, is $100,000, and the capacity of their mill is 200 barrels per day.
An efficient fire department was established and equipped with the necessary apparatus, and a police force was established.
The city bonded to the extent of $15,000 for water works, and a supply is taken form the Red River by three Worthington pumps which have a capacity of 1,250,000 gallons per day, and will safely stand a strain of 180 pounds per inch on the mains. The population at the close of 1882 was about 7,000.
The year 1883 was marked by no marvelous development. In fact, the growth was neither rapid nor substantial as that of 1882. Early in the year, a disastrous fire destroyed half of one of the most prominent blocks of stores, upon the site of which Budge, Griggs & Co. have erected a three-story block with a frontage of 100 feet, which is a splendid piece of workmanship, and a great addition to the city.
And this Grand Forks has risen: In 1871 it had one store and thirty-three inhabitants. Now it has nearly a mile and half of store frontage, and over seven thousand inhabitants. Then education was meager and religion hardly remembered. Now the foundation walls of a Territorial University are laid, the city has a splendid system of well attended public school, and the joyful chimes of six church bells ring out their glad anthems every Sabbath morning.
THE PRESS --- The Plaindealer, is the oldest paper in the Red River Valley, having been established in November, 1874, by Hon. George H. Walsh. In September, 1880, it was purchased by Mr. W. J. Murphy, the present proprietor, and conducted by him as a weekly until May 15, 1881, when the Daily Plaindealer was started as an evening journal. It is most ably edited; has the afternoon associated press dispatches, and every issue is brimful of the general news of the day, especial attention being given to home and vicinity items and interests. Its circulation is increasing and there is no more creditable newspaper in the Territory, being equal to any and second to none. The Weekly Plaindealer is the largest and one of the best papers published west of St. Paul, and as a farmer’s journal it stand without a rival. It is the aim of Mr. Murphy to keep it at the front. The subscription list is growing, the circulation being at present about 1,700, and especial pains are being taken constantly to make this the best advertising medium in the Northwest. In the connection with the news department is a first-class job office. Five new and improved steampresses are kept continually busy turning out fine job printing of all kind, from the heavy poster to the daintiest card. None but first-class workmen are employed, and all the latest styles and varieties of the times in the line of typographical designs are secured. The job department of the Plaindealer has a standard reputation for the satisfactory work done and the reasonable rates charged. In every way it is a creditable industry to the Northwest, to the city of Grand Forks and it enterprising proprietor.
The Grand Forks Weekly Herald was established June 26, 1879, by Mr. George B. Winship, its present editor and proprietor. It was issued semi-weekly from March 1, 1881, to November 1, of the same year, when the Daily was established. It is a seven-column sheet, ably and carefully edited; contains the full associated press dispatches, and thoroughly represents the popular sentiment in North Dakota. The recent absorption of the daily and weekly News by Herald makes the latter one of the most extensively circulated and influential journals in the Northwest. It is Republican in politics and in full keeping with the best journalists features of the day.
The Tidende is a Scandinavian paper which was established in 1880. It is the only paper printed in the Scandinavian language in the county, it circulation is large and increasing weekly; its politics are Republican, and it is ably edited and managed by Mr. T. Gutbranson, who is an experienced journalist and a gentleman of prominence and influence in the community, especially among the countrymen.
LARIMORE --- The site of the present city of Larimore settled upon by A. F. Clark, Esq., in March , 1881. Mr. Clark took land under the homestead laws, and made the necessary improvements. In March, 1882, he sold it to Elk Valley Farming Company, of which Oscar M. Towner was at that time president. This company filed a plat of the original town on the 29th day of March, 1882. Mr. L. P. Goodhue arrived here in May, 1881, and in August of that year opened the first store of any kind in the town, having then to bring his goods by team from Ojata, to which point the railroad was completed. Among the buildings of any prominence following the construction of Mr. Goodhue’s store, was the Union Hotel, Mr. George Leavitt’s livery stable, W. B. Barkman’s hardware store and N. S. Nelson’s general merchandise store.
The Elk Valley Farming Company own a large tract of land adjoining the city on the south, and at this time it was not under cultivation, and the land immediately tributary on other sides had not yet been settled, and until the arrival of the railroad, there was little chance for Larimore to improve.
In December, 1881, the St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba Railroad reached the city, and people began to come from all points, and the surrounding country was settled rapidly. In the early part of December, Mr. L. P. Goodhue was appointed Postmaster, and the first regular mails arrived. The reports of wheat buyers at Larimore show that there were 50,000 bushels of wheat marketed at that point in 1881. The entire population upon the completion of the railroad did not exceed twenty-five.
The year 1882 was one of progress unprecedented in the annals of this section. Building went up by day and by night, and people came in larger numbers than could be cared for, until in December the population reached nearly 900.
The first school was taught by Miss F. F. Stoner, and was held in Noltimier’s Hall. It was opened early in the spring of 1882. The teachers of the first regular public school were Messrs., George A. Stanton and James J. Doherty. They taught for a term of six months, when, after a short vacation, a three months term was taught by Misses Flora Blackman and B. Berlin.
Messrs., Pillsbury and Hulburt and the Northwestern Elevator Company of Minneapolis built two elevators during the summer of 1882, with a capacity of 75,000 and 40,000 bushels, respectively. There were about 300,000 bushels of wheat marketed here from the crop of 1882.
On June 29, 1882, a fire broke out in an addition to the Union Hotel, just in process of construction. With the limited means at hand of controlling the conflagration, which threatened to wipe this fair young city out of existence, nothing could be done to check it ravages, and not until it had burned all of the southeastern part of the town, comprising nearly half of the buildings, could it be controlled. With that enterprise and push which makes cities out of hamlets blow, and in three months not a trace of the fire remained.
The first church, (Presbyterian) was organized on the 6th of August, 1882, with fourteen members. A church building was erected the same fall, at a cost of $1,700. Rev. J. C. Cherryholmes was it first pastor.
In March, 1882, Mr. C. C. Walcott opened the first bank and did business until December, when the institution was organized as a national bank, with A. J. Browne, president; C. C. Walcott, vice president; and Charles A. Browne, cashier. Their paid up capital is $50,000.
On June 2, 1883, it was decided by popular vote to bond the school district for $6,000, to build a school house, and in September the erection of a very handsome edifice was commenced, which, when completed, will have cost $8,000 or $9,000.
The first city election occurred June 5, 1883, at which time the following officers were elected: W. N. Roach, Mayor; C. G. Reynolds, Clerk and Treasurer; E. C. Shortridge, Justice; and W. H. Fellows, George W. Murdoch, H. A. Noltimier, George M. Naylor, Solomon H. Bailey and A. Zachman, Councilmen.
The Larimore Pioneer was the first newspaper established. It was first issued in February, 1882, being followed by the Leader in March of the same year. The former paper was owned and edited by W. M. Scott & Co., and the latter by Bennett & Murphy, of Grand Forks, and edited by A. W. Dunn.
The present population of Larimore is about 1,100. The city has a large and growing trade from the surrounding country, which is being settled very rapidly. A large amount of grain is hauled here annually, from points several miles distant. The growth of the place is steady and substantial, and the result is a solid business town.