6200BC The glacial lake Agassiz-Ojibway, body of
water so vast that it covered parts of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, North
Dakota, Ontario and Minnesota, massively drained, sending a flow of
water into the Hudson Strait and the Labrador Sea. The sudden flood
of fresh water diluted the saltiness of the Gulf Stream weakening
(Econ, 9/9/06, Survey p.6)(AFP, 2/24/08)
1804 Aug 31, Lewis and Clark
held a council with local Sioux Indian chiefs in what is now eastern
(ON, 4/12, p.9)
1804 Oct 26, Lewis and Clark
accepted an invitation to camp for the winter near a cluster of
villages inhabited by the Mandan and Hidatsa Indians.
(ON, 4/12, p.10)
1804 Nov, Lewis and Clark hired
French-Canadian fur trapper Toussaint Charbonneau as an interpreter,
with the understanding that Sacagawea, who was only about 16 and
pregnant, would come along to interpret the Shoshone language. She
and another woman had been purchased by Charbonneau, who lived among
the Hidatsa and Mandan Indians, to be his wives.
(HN, 2/11/99)(HNQ, 12/1/99)
1805 Feb 11, At Fort Mandan ND
Sacajawea (16), the Shoshoni guide for Lewis & Clark, gave birth
to a son, with Meriwether Lewis serving as midwife. Sacagawea, the
young Native American girl who aided the Lewis and Clark Expedition,
was of the Lemhi Shoshones, who made their home in what is now
southeastern Idaho and southwestern Montana. About 1800 Sacagawea
was captured by a Hidatsa raiding party at the Three Forks of the
Missouri River. Sometime in 1804, she and another woman were
purchased by French-Canadian fur trapper Toussaint Charbonneau, who
lived among the Hidatsa and Mandan Indians, to be his wives.
(HN, 2/11/99)(HNQ, 12/1/99)(AH, 2/05, p.17)
1805 Apr 7, The Lewis and Clark
Corps of Discovery resumed their journey to the headwaters of the
(ON, 4/12, p.10)
1851 The Fort Laramie Treaty
was signed between the US government and the Sioux Indians. The
Sioux pledged not to harass the wagon trains traveling the Oregon
Trail in exchange for a $50,000 annuity. The treaty did not last
long. Some 12,000 American Indians gathered at Fort Laramie,
Nebraska Territory, for a peace council with the US. The government
agreed that 12 million acres of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara
Indians would remain free of settlement (eastern Montana,
northeastern Wyoming and western North Dakota). In 1949 Congress
authorized a forced relocation to build the Garrison Dam in North
Dakota. In 1986 Martin Cross won a settlement of $149.2 million for
the unjust taking of reservation land. In 2004 Paul VanDevelder
authored “Coyote Warrior: One Man, Three Tribes, and the Trial that
Forged a Nation."
(HT, 3/97, p.43)(SSFC, 8/29/04, p.M5)
1861 Mar 2, The Territory of
Nevada was created by an act of Congress. The first elected governor
of the state was Henry G. Blasdel. US Congress created the Dakota
& Nevada Territories out of the Nebraska & Utah territories
(LVRJ, 11/1/97, p.1B)(SFEC, 7/9/00, DB p.67)(SC,
1883 The US Supreme Court ruled
that the Dakota Territory court had no jurisdiction in a case in
which a member of the Lakota nation killed a fellow member on tribal
land. The decision overturned a death sentence and effectively gave
exclusive jurisdiction for crimes to tribes. In 1885 US Congress
passed the Major Crimes Act taking away the tribes’ authority to
prosecute serious crimes such as murder, manslaughter and rape.
(WSJ, 8/13/07, p.A12)
1885 Mar 3, The United States
Congress passed the Major Crimes Act (18 U.S.C. 1153). It placed
seven major crimes under federal jurisdiction if they are committed
by a Native American in Native territory regardless of whether the
victim of the crime was Native.
1889 Feb 22, President
Cleveland signed a bill to admit the Dakotas, Montana and Washington
state to the Union. The "omnibus bill" was an act dividing the
Dakota Territory into the states of North and South Dakota, and
enabling the two Dakotas to formulate constitutions. A
constitutional convention was held at Bismarck beginning July 4,
1889. A constitution was formulated and submitted to a vote of the
people of the State of North Dakota on October 1, 1889, and was
1889 Jul 4, North Dakota
founders began drafting a constitution but left out a key
requirement that the governor and other top officials take an oath
of office, putting the state constitution in conflict with the
federal one. In 2011 State Senator Tim Mathern introduced a bill
fixing the mistake that will be put to voters.
1889 Nov 2, North Dakota became
the 39th state.
(HFA, '96, p.42)(AP, 11/2/97
1897 The Red River in Fargo
North Dakota crested at 39.1 feet. The record was broken in 1997.
(SFC, 4/16/97, p.A3)
1908 Mar 11, Lawrence Welk,
orchestra leader, was born in Strasburg, ND.
(HN, 3/11/98)(MC, 3/12/02)
1908 Mar 22, Louis L’Amour
(d.1998), American author, was born in Jamestown, North Dakota. He
wrote 116 western novels.
(HN, 3/22/97)(USAT, 6/10/98, p.1D)(MC, 3/22/02)
1908 Chase Lake, about 60 miles
north of Bismarck, ND, was established as a protected area by Pres.
Theodore Roosevelt, to save a dwindling number of pelicans from
hunters. The colony, down to 50 breeding pairs, peaked in 2000 with
some 17,500 pairs on the 4,385-acre site.
(SFC, 7/13/04, p.A2)
1909 Jan 22, Hariette Lake (aka
Ann Sothern, d. 2001), film and TV actress, was born in Valley City.
(SFC, 3/17/01, p.A23)
1910 A statue to Sacagawea was
erected on the grounds of the North Dakota Capitol in Bismarck. In
2003 a replica of the statue was erected in the Capitol Rotunda in
Washington, DC. The Hidatsa tribe preferred her named spelled as
(SFC, 10/17/03, p.A2)
1913 Mar 1, The 1st state law
requiring bonding of officers and state employees was enacted in
1919 The Bank of North Dakota
was founded in Bismarck to lend money to farmers. As a state owned
bank the states Legislature had the authority to tap the bank’s
profit to fund government programs during tough times.
(SFC, 12/18/11, p.D2)
1920 May 26, Peggy Lee
(d.2002), jazz singer, was born in Jamestown, ND, as Norma Dolores
(HN, 5/26/01)(SFC, 1/23/02, p.A2)
1921 North Dakota Republican
Gov. Lynn Frazier was recalled in the midst of an agricultural
recession. Frazier was elected to the US Senate in 1922 and served
for 18 years.
(SSFC, 6/28/03, p.A1)
1929 Syrian Muslims built the
first mosque in America in Ross, North Dakota.
(AH, 4/07, p.31)
1933 Nov 11, The first of the
great dust storms of the 1930s hit North Dakota.
1936 Feb 15, The temp hit -60ø
F (-51ø C) in Parshall, North Dakota for a state record.
(440 Int’l., 2/15/99)
1941 Mar 15, A blizzard in
North Dakota killed 151. [see Mar 16]
1941 Mar 16, A blizzard hit
North Dakota and Minnesota killing 60. [see Mar 15]
1954 The 600-square-mile
Garrison Dam in North Dakota, authorized by Congress in 1949, was
completed. It covered the ancestral lands of Mandan, Hidatsa and
(SSFC, 8/29/04, p.M5)
1959 Feb 4, In Fargo, N.D.,
Bobby Vee (15), aka Robert Veline, and the Shadows performed in
public for the first time. The audience had come to see Buddy Holly
and the Crickets. Rock-n-roll stars, including Dion and the
Belmonts, traveled by bus from Iowa to Fargo in order to perform in
nearby Moorhead, Minn.
(SFEC, 1/31/99, p.A24)(WSJ, 2/25/99, p.A16)
1980 Sep 15, A B-52H bomber
carrying nuclear-armed AGM-69 missiles experienced a fuel leak in
its number three main wing tank and caught fire on the ground at
Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota.
1983 Jun 3, Gordon Kahl
(b.1920), a militant tax protester wanted in the slayings of two US
marshals in North Dakota, was killed in a gun battle with law
enforcement officials near Smithville, Ark. Kahl was a former member
of the anti-tax Posse Comitatus movement founded in 1969 by Henry L
1987 Nov 17, Richard McNair
(28) killed Jerome Theis, of Circle Pines, Minn., during a burglary
at a Minot, North Dakota, grain elevator. Richard Kitzman, an
elevator employee, was shot three times but survived. McNair was
convicted and sentenced to life in prison, but escaped a number of
times. In 2007 he was again captured in New Brunswick, Canada.
1988 Jun 10, Author Louis
L'Amour died in Los Angeles at age 80. He wrote 116 western novels.
L’Amour trained troops in survival and later fought in the European
theater in tank destroyers. His early life was filled with the same
type of adventures that he wrote about. Due to economic problems and
an adventuresome spirit, L’Amour left his Jamestown, N.D., home when
he was 15 and spent the next several decades tramping the West and
sailing the world. He worked at just about everything that would
keep him alive. His writings was just beginning to be published when
the war started.
(AP, 6/10/98)(USAT, 6/10/98, p.1D)(HNQ, 7/15/01)
1988 Basin Electric Power
Cooperative of Bismarck, ND, paid the US government $85 million for
the Dakota Gasification Co. of Beulah, which had begun as a $1.5
billion public-private venture under the Carter administration to
turn reduce US dependence on Middle East oil.
(SFC, 10/15/03, p.A4)
1992 In Regent Gary Greff began
erecting metal sculptures along a 32 mile stretch from I-94. His
"Enchanted Highway" came to include the "Tin Family," "Teddy
Roosevelt," giant pheasants, a 40-foot tall rooster and a 30-foot
(WSJ, 4/26/99, p.A1,9)(SFC, 9/13/99, p.A3)
1995 Len Kretchman and David
Geske of Fargo, ND, developed the Uncrustable sandwich, a peanut
butter and jelly sandwich sealed in a pocket of bread. Smucker Corp.
bought their company and received a patent for the sandwich in Dec,
(WSJ, 4/5/05, p.B1)
1996 Sep 11, Grasshoppers
plagued North Dakota. The insects were a problem in Wyoming, Montana
and Nebraska. Another dry summer and it was predicted that they
would spread to Idaho, Oregon and Washington.
(SFC, 9/11/96, p.A2)
1997 Apr 17, The Red River in
Fargo, North Dakota, was to have crested at 39.5 feet, surpassing
the 1897 record. Snow and freezing rain over a 3 day period led to
(SFC, 4/16/97, p.A3)(SFC, 4/2/99, p.A3)
1997 Apr 19, The Red River
broke dikes in Grand Forks, N.D. and sent nearly half of the 50,000
population into evacuation. Damages were estimated at over $1.5
(SFEC, 4/20/97, p.A1)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.39)
1998 Apr 14, The Grand Forks
Herald of North Dakota won a Pulitzer Prize for its coverage of the
1997 flood and fire despite a damaged printing plant.
(WSJ, 4/15/98, p.A1)
1998 Nov 10, A heavy snow storm
hit the northern Midwest. Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Dakotas
suffered loss of power, heavy snow and violent winds.
(SFC, 11/11/98, p.A3)
1998 Global Electric MotorCars
(GEMs) began production in Fargo. The 72-volt electric motor cars
could cruise at 25mph and go 35 miles between charges.
(SFC, 8/7/00, p.A19)
1999 North Dakota Gov. Edward
Schafer signed a law that allowed farmers to seek permits from the
FDA to grow hemp. In 2007 two North Dakota farmers filed a lawsuit
to force the DEA to issue permits to grow hemp.
(SFC, 6/8/99, p.A15)(Econ, 6/23/07, p.40)
2001 Oct 24, A blizzard hit
North Dakota and Minnesota. The 10 inches of snow broke a 1926 Grand
Forks record. The blizzard killed 6 people in the Midwest with 4
dead in North Dakota car crashes.
(WSJ, 10/25/01, p.A1)(SFC, 10/26/01, p.D8)
2002 Jan 18, A train carrying
anhydrous ammonia fertilizer derailed near Minot. The liquid turned
to gas upon contact with air and one resident died from inhaling the
(SFC, 1/19/02, p.A3)
2002 Mar 20, Bismarck received
a record 5.4 inches of snow.
(SSFC, 3/24/02, p.A20)
2002 Jul 22, North Dakota's
Gov. John Hoeven was headed to Cuba to promote trade of peas, wheat
and other foods to the communist island from his state. It was only
the 2nd visit to Cuba by a sitting American governor in some 40
2003 Apr 3, The N. Dakota state
Senate voted to keep a 113-year-old law that made it a crime for
unmarried couples to live together.
(SFC, 4/4/03, p.A7)
2003 Nov 22, North Dakota
student Dru Sjodin (22) was last seen at the Grand Forks, ND, mall,
where she worked. Her body was found the following April near
Crookston, Minn. Suspect Alfonso Rodriguez Jr., released from prison
6-months before the murder, pleaded innocent to kidnapping resulting
in Sjodin's death. In 2006 a jury found Rodriguez (53) guilty of
kidnapping and killing Sjodin and was sentenced to death. North
Dakota’s last execution was in 1905.
(SSFC, 4/18/04, p.A13)(AP, 11/22/04)(SFC,
8/31/06, p.A7)(SFC, 9/23/06, p.A3)
2003 Dec 1, Alfonso Rodriguez
Jr. (50), described by authorities as a predatory sex offender was
arrested in Crookston, Minn. He was charged with kidnapping in the
disappearance of Dru Sjodin, a North Dakota college student,
abducted Nov 22, while talking on her cell phone.
2004 Apr 17, The body of
University of North Dakota student Dru Sjodin (22) was found in a
ravine northwest of Crookston, Minn. She was last seen Nov 22 at the
Grand Forks, ND, mall, where she worked. Alfonso Rodriquez was
arrested in Dec. and investigators matched DNA in blood in his car
(AP, 4/18/04)(SSFC, 4/18/04, p.A13)
2004 Nov 2, John Hoeven (R) was
elected governor of North Dakota.
(SFC, 11/4/04, p.A18)
2005 Apr, Canada, backed by
Minnesota and other states, provinces, environmental groups and
Indian leaders, asked for a year-long expedited review by the
International Joint Commission on a $25 million plan by North Dakota
to take water from land-locked Devils Lake to the nearby Sheyenne
River with the goal of stabilizing the lake at current levels. The
water would ultimately drain into Manitoba's Lake Winnipeg, the
world's 10th largest freshwater lake.
2005 Jul 1, In North Dakota a
14-mile, $28 million drainage channel, from Devil’s Lake to the
Sheyenne River, was scheduled to open, but it was held up by heavy
(Econ, 7/16/05, p.34)
2005 Aug 18, It was reported
that an anthrax outbreak had killed hundreds of cattle in parts of
the Great Plains, forcing quarantines and devastating Dakota
ranchers who worry how they will recover financially. Two ranches in
Texas were quarantined last month after anthrax was found in cattle,
horses and deer.
2005 Nov 29, Broad areas of the
Dakotas remained shut down by the Plains' first blizzard of the
season, with highways closed by blowing, drifting snow and thousands
of people without electricity as temperatures hit the low teens.
2006 Jan 13, North Dakota State
University's North Central Research Center, Basin Electric Power
Cooperative and other partners described plans for a station in
Minot to refuel hydrogen-powered vehicles using wind power.
2006 North Dakota Sen. Byron
Dorgan authored “Take This Job and Ship It: How Corporate Greed and
Brain-Dead Politics Are Selling Our America."
(Econ, 1/9/10, p.32)
2006 In North Dakota a drought
wiped out 10% of the value of the state’s wheat crop.
(Econ, 6/28/14, p.24)
2006 North Dakota’s population
stood at about 637,000 people, down a high of some 681,000 reached
during the Great Depression.
(WSJ, 12/1/06, p.A1)
2007 Feb 8, A federal judge in
Fargo, N.D., sentenced Alfonso Rodriguez Jr. to death for the
slaying of college student Dru Sjodin.
2007 Feb 17, In North Dakota
More than 8,900 people flapped their arms and legs on the state
Capitol grounds in an attempt to reclaim the record, which was
snatched away about a year ago in Michigan. The snow angel category
was created in 2002 when 1,791 people made snow angels on the
Capitol grounds in North Dakota.
2008 Jan 28, The US Senate
confirmed former North Dakota Gov. Edward Schafer as secretary of
(WSJ, 1/29/08, p.A1)
2008 Jun 3, Barack Obama sealed
the US Democratic presidential nomination. Hillary Clinton did not
give up yet, but said she’d be interested in the No. 2 spot. Obama
won the Montana primary, while Clinton won the South Dakota primary.
(AP, 6/4/08)(SFC, 6/4/08, p.A1)(Econ, 5/31/08,
2008 Jun, The watchdog group
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Government (CREW)
complained that Sen. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) and Chris Dodd (D-Conn.)
had received “sweatheart" mortgage deals from Countrywide while they
were chairmen of Senate committees. Both men were cleared by a
Senate ethics committee in 2009.
(SFC, 8/8/09, p.A4)
2009 Jan 6, North Dakota Gov.
John Hoeven reported a budget surplus and plans to grow reserves to
between $800 million and $1.2 billion.
2009 Mar 25, North Dakota
officials issued an urgent call for volunteers to help with
sandbagging as record amounts of water poured into the Missouri
River and evacuations were ordered in riverside areas.
2009 Mar 27, In North Dakota
the Red River rose to a daunting 112-year high and breached one of
the dikes fortifying Fargo, but the mayor pledged to "go down
swinging" as he called for more evacuations and additional National
Guard troops to prevent a devastating flood.
2009 Mar 28, In North Dakota
the Red River crested at 12:15 a.m. at 40.82 feet, more than 22 feet
above flood stage.
2009 Mar 29, In North Dakota
the bloated Red River briefly breached a dike, pouring water into a
school campus and the Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker called it a "wakeup
call" for a city that needs to be vigilant for weaknesses in levees
that could give way at any time.
2009 May 25, In Alabama
prisoners Joshua Southwick (26) and Ashton Mink (22) were mistakenly
allowed outside a prison by a worker who thought they were kitchen
trusties. On June 6 they were arrested after a nearly 14-hour
standoff on a ranch in North Dakota. Also taken into custody were
two women who authorities said helped the men escape: Angela Diana
Mink (25) and Jacquelin Rae Kennamer Mink (25) Mink's sister and
2009 Nov 3, In North Dakota 3
female Dickinson State Univ. softball players were found dead after
their sport utility vehicle went into a pond on a farm during a
stargazing trip on Nov 1. Authorities said they likely drove
straight into the water in the dark.
2010 Apr 8, The North Dakota
Supreme Court ruled that the Board of Higher Education had the
authority to dump the Univ. of North Dakota “Fighting Sioux"
(SFC, 4/9/10, p.A8)
2010 Sep 22, It was reported
that North Dakota’s Devil’s Lake, called a slow-growing monster, has
steadily expanded over the last 20 years, swallowing up thousands of
acres, hundreds of buildings and at least two towns in its rising
2010 North Dakota counted some
641,000 residents, or about .02% of the US population.
(Econ, 2/13/10, p.33)
2011 Jan 28, In Minot, North
Dakota, a mother, her 2 children and her boyfriend were found dead
at a home and trailer.
(SFC, 1/29/11, p.A6)(SSFC, 1/30/11, p.A10)
2011 Jun 24, In North Dakota
the Souris River swamped as estimated 2,500 homes in Minot as it
soared nearly 4 feet in less than a day. More than a quarter of the
city’s 40,000 residents had evacuated earlier this week.
(SFC, 6/25/11, p.A6)
2012 Feb 10, In North Dakota
the vice president in charge of overseeing a foreign students
program resigned following a report that the school had awarded
hundreds of degrees to foreign students who did not earn them.
(SSFC, 2/12/12, p.A14)
2012 Mar 6, Ten US states voted
in the Super Tuesday Republican primaries. Republican presidential
frontrunner Mitt Romney edged out conservative rival Rick Santorum
in the vital battleground of Ohio and won five of the night's other
contests. Romney also notched victories in Alaska, Idaho, Vermont,
Virginia and his home-state of Massachusetts, while Santorum won
North Dakota, Oklahoma and Tennessee, and Newt Gingrich carried his
home state of Georgia.
(SFC, 3/7/12, p.A6)(Econ, 3/10/12, p.18)
2012 Jul, In North Dakota Halek
Operating ND LLC was fined for putting drinking water at risk by
illegally dumping over 800,000 gallons of oil-field wastewater into
a former oil well and then attempting to cover up the crime.
(SFC, 8/13/14, p.E5)
2013 Mar 22, North Dakota
lawmakers took a step toward outlawing abortion altogether in the
state by passing a so-called personhood resolution that says a
fertilized egg has the same right to life as a person. The House's
approval sends the matter to voters, who will decide whether to add
the wording to the state's constitution in November 2014.
2013 Mar 26, North Dakota Gov.
Jack Dalrymple signed legislation that that would make North Dakota
the nation's most restrictive state on abortion rights, banning the
procedure if a fetal heartbeat can be detected — something that can
happen as early as six weeks into a pregnancy.
2013 Nov 16, In North Dakota
Craig Cobb was arrested along with Kynan Dutton over accusations
they were brandishing firearms and sticks and threatening residents
in the town of Leith. The white supremacists were charged on Nov 18
with terrorizing residents of Leith, where Cobb had sought to create
a white enclave. On April 29, 2014, a state judge sentenced Cobb to
four years probation but no additional jail time.
(Reuters, 11/18/13)(SFC, 4/30/14, p.A6)
2013 Dec 30, In North Dakota a
mile-long train carrying crude oil derailed 5 miles from Casselton.
As many as 20 cars caught fire.
(SFC, 12/31/13, p.A6)
2013 Dec 30, The US FAA
selected six states (Alaska, Nevada, New York, North Dakota, Texas
and Virginia) to test how drones can be more widely used in US
airspace. 24 states had competed for selection.
(SFC, 12/31/13, p.A6)
2014 Apr 16, US District Judge
Daniel Hovland overturned a North Dakota law banning abortions when
a fetal heartbeat can be detected, as early as six weeks into
pregnancy, and before many women know they’re pregnant. On May 14
the state filed an appeal on the ruling.
(SFC, 4/17/14, p.A5)(SFC, 5/15/14, p.A7)
2014 Jun 6, In North Dakota
seven couples filed a federal lawsuit challenging the state’s
constitutional ban on same-sex marriage, making it the last state in
the country to be sued by couples seeking the right to marry in
their home state.
(SFC, 6/7/14, p.A4)
2014 Jun 13, Pres. Obama spoke
at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota promoting the
need to help reservations create jobs. Some 63% of able workers at
Standing Rock were unemployed. The 2.3 million-acre reservation was
home to some 850 residents.
(SFC, 6/14/14, p.A4)
2014 Nov 3, The US Air Force
fired two commanders and disciplined a third for lapses and
misbehavior at intercontinental ballistic missile bases in North
Dakota and Wyoming.
(SFC, 11/5/14, p.A7)