Dakota Datebook: July 11-15 | Information, Sports activities, Jobs

Chief Trying’s Village


July 11 — Way back there stood a village within the midst of the prairie. It was excessive on the hillside overlooking the nice Missouri River Valley. From this place one might see for miles throughout the panorama. A panorama with out pavement, automobile exhaust, or street indicators — solely marked by the rise and fall of the solar and the evening stars. This place was dwelling to the Mandan folks, whose earth lodge village was a part of the rhythm of the land. This was Chief Trying’s Village.

Flash ahead about 350 years. The Northern Pacific Railroad is constructing a brand new line headed towards the western shores of North America, chopping throughout the Midwest. In 1872 its terminus is Bismarck, a metropolis whose foundations share the exact same bluffs because the Mandan’s village.

The brand new identify for the younger metropolis of Bismarck got here from 1000’s of miles away on the 1873 Vienna World Exposition. The Northern Pacific Railroad created a grand map for the Exposition boasting the attain of its rail strains. This map confirmed an excellent metropolis referred to as Bismarck, “very close to the center of the universe.” The famend German chief Otto von Bismarck’s identify was chosen by the industrious firm to draw German traders and encourage settlement on the prairies.

Quickly many homesteaders can be making their approach to the Missouri River Valley. Hopes of a brand new life and a bit of wealthy soil introduced immigrants from all over the world to the Missouri River Valley.

One in all these settlers was O. J. Simmons, whose homestead was situated about two miles north of Bismarck. In July of 1873 upon analyzing his new homestead Simmons discovered some remnants of earlier inhabitants. On the excessive bluffs there gave the impression to be traces of a well-fortified ditch, an embankment, and distinct “tenting grounds.” Simmons additionally discovered items of pottery, bones, flint chips, and arrowheads. Simmons was impressed by the wonder and craftsmanship of the pottery, which was “exhausting as flint” and “positive,” in all probability produced from the positive silt that abounds within the Missouri River bottoms.

The village that was as soon as part of the Simmon’s homestead is now preserved inside Pioneer Park of Bismarck. It was excavated in 1934 by Bruce Wallace, and named “Ward Village” after William Oscar Ward, who donated his land to town to create a public park. The village was studied once more in 1997, however a lot of its historical past remains to be unknown. In Could of 2003, the archeological website was renamed from Ward Village to “Chief Trying’s Village” in honor of the identify it as soon as held to the Mandan folks.

At the moment one can nonetheless go to the positioning and find out about its deep historical past. Though the panorama and its identify have modified barely over time, the view remains to be spectacular.

Battle of Fort Stevens


July 12 — On this present day in 1864, Gen. Jubal A. Early and 20,000 Accomplice troops attacked Fort Stevens, simply exterior Washington, D.C. President Abraham Lincoln and the First Girl traveled to the fort to observe the battle.

Readily available to witness the occasion was future North Dakota resident and politician Smith Stimmel. Serving as one in every of Lincoln’s private bodyguards, he had been ordered that morning to accompany the president. “On arriving on the Fort,” Stimmel wrote, “the President left his carriage and took his place behind the earthworks.”

It was a brief combat, ending by sunset with the Confederates in retreat, however not earlier than sharpshooters had wounded an officer and a health care provider standing subsequent to Lincoln. The Battle of Fort Stevens, witnessed by Smith Stimmel, not solely saved Washington, D.C., but additionally marked the one battle during which a sitting U.S. president got here underneath direct enemy hearth.

Battle of the Grand Coteau


July 13 — On this present day in 1851 a small Metis looking occasion engaged Dakota warriors on the battle of the Grand Coteau, southeast of present-day Minot.

The Metis, largely the descendants of Ojibwa and Cree moms and European fathers, have been on a looking expedition once they stumbled upon a big encampment of Dakota American Indians. All through the early nineteenth century, the Dakota have been the Metis’ bitter rivals, and competed for a similar land and meals assets. On the Grand Coteau each teams engaged in fierce combating. Nevertheless, the Metis have been capable of efficiently fortify their positions and suffered just one fatality, whereas the Dakota misplaced some 80 males, and almost as many horses.

Though each teams misplaced their later makes an attempt at independence from the Canadian and American governments, the Battle of the Grand Coteau ended main hostilities between the 2 peoples.

Heartbroke Hermit


July 14 — A tragic “prank of destiny” was reported from Mandan on this present day in 1916. Christian Maier got here to Morton County after his life took a horrible flip again in his mom nation of Russia.

Maier had returned to Russia after combating within the Russo-Japanese conflict. He discovered, to his horror, that his greatest good friend had fallen in love together with his spouse and informed her that her husband had been killed on the battlefield. The 2 have been married, and when Maier returned to seek out his spouse within the arms of his good friend, he fled to the opposite facet of the world.

Heartbroken, the poor man settled a homestead declare close to New Leipzig, however grew to become generally known as considerably of a hermit within the space. Lastly, neighbors went to examine on him in the future and located the person half-starved, speaking to invisible individuals. Maier didn’t even appear to note the neighbors’ presence, and it was determined to ship him to the state hospital for the insane at Jamestown for assist.

Hudson Townsite


July 15 — A couple of miles southwest of Oakes stands a lonely stone monument. Absent just a few piles of stones, faint depressions within the floor and the prairie grasses, little surrounds the marker memorializing the primary city website of Dickey County — Hudson.

By the growth of the railroads into Dakota Territory, an excellent inflow of settlers migrated into the area, sparking the Nice Dakota Growth of the 1870s and Eighties. Though short-lived, the growth years noticed not solely elevated settlement, however the institution of a large number of new cities. Laid out like pearls on a necklace of rail line, new communities quickly materialized alongside the brand new tracks. Early speculators hoped to make the most of the alternatives afforded by the brand new railroads by establishing new cities to function rural hubs — transport in manufactured merchandise from out-of-state, and transport out agricultural produce from the countryside. Hudson, in Dickey County, was such a city, and shortly sprang from the Dakota soil in 1883.

As plans went forth for the creation of the Dakota Midland Railroad to hyperlink the cities of Ellendale and Wahpeton by rail, a brand new city simply west of the James River was deliberate. Heaps have been shortly divided up, streets with names like “Broadway,” “Grand” and “State” have been laid out, and a big central sq. was opened as a public park, or maybe later a splendid metropolis corridor. Earlier than a single rail tie had reached the group, Hudson had already begun development. Quickly after its institution, enterprise was thriving in Hudson. The city loved the companies of two inns, three shops, three actual property and mortgage places of work, a printing workplace, livery steady, pump store, blacksmith store, publish workplace and a city newspaper, the Hudson Herald.

Though Hudson was off to a promising begin, the city constructed by railroad speculators folded simply as shortly because it had begun. The Dakota Midland Railroad, which might have meant success for the small group, by no means materialized. As a substitute three different railroads pushed by means of the area, and all bypassed the small settlement, as a substitute passing by means of the city of Oakes, only a few miles away on the east financial institution of the James River.

Hudson’s loss was Oakes’ acquire. Realizing that their city was doomed with out the monetary advantages introduced by the railroad, the folks of Hudson closed up store. As quickly because the James River froze within the winter of 1886-87, the settlers loaded their buildings onto skids and moved nearly your complete city of Hudson to Oakes. In 1936 the North Dakota State Historic Society acquired the Hudson townsite and 20 years in a while July 15, 1956, devoted a stone marker to commemorate the city that, like many others in North Dakota, collapsed as fortune refused to show its means.

“Dakota Datebook” is a radio sequence from Prairie Public in partnership with the State Historic Society of North Dakota and with funding from Humanities North Dakota.

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