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Institute Finding Aids: Pioneer Life

  • Barnes, Lucien A. (Mss 189) The collection documents a farm family that settled in Cass County near Fargo and consists of a wide variety of family documents.
  • Barrett, Ben (Mss 255) Extension agent in Emmons County, N. D. from 1934 to 1959 who wrote about his life as an agent and early farmer.
  • Braaten, Ardith Marie (Accession 2334)  The Food Habits of Pioneers of the Red River Valley of the North Oral History Collection consists of thirteen audio tapes of oral history interviews done by Ardith M. Braaten as part of research for her master of science degree in food and nutrition at North Dakota State University in 1968. Her research study “was undertaken in an attempt to preserve some of the food habits and customs of the early settlers in the Red River Valley of the North.”
  • Burnham, John (Mss 155) Topics covered include army life (1863-1867), service with Henry Hasting Sibley in North Dakota, the 121st United States Colored Troops, army experiences in the Southwest after the war.
  • Christensen, Oscar A. (Mss 336) The collection consists of correspondence and writings, including The Man Behind the Plow, a family history of pioneer life in Minnesota.
  • Clark, Don J. (Mss 660) The collection consists of the justice docket for Abercrombie (1907-1940); mortgages; contracts; warranty deeds (1885-1895); First Rifle Regiment of Vermont roll (1843); financial records (1862-1880) of his father, Martin C. Clark; corpse transport permits; county tax receipts; and tow scrapbooks (1980-1956) of clippings on people and historical events at Abercrombie and Richland County which were complied by Ethel Clark Hutchinson.
  • Crawford, Robert D. (Mss 290) The collection consists of family correspondence (1864-1894) and handwritten reminiscence (734 p.) by Crawford concerning family history, pioneer life in Minnesota and the Wahpeton, ND area, together with their Putney, Vermont background.
  • Danielson, Charles V. (SC 168) Original handwritten manuscript and typed copy (37 leaves) of "Early memories of Charles V. Danielson," recounting the life of his Swedish immigrant parents, Erick and Lovisa Danielson, who came to the United States in 1866 from Narkes Lane, Varmland, Sweden and to the Painted Woods area in 1879 to homestead, and on his life to about 1910; and two newspaper clippings.
  • Dean, Anna (SC 62) Photocopy of a historical article written on the early settlers of the Keystone and Monango, N.D. area including Porter Township.
  • Dougherty, Lawrence (SC 43) Photocopy of biographical sketch of the Dougherty family homesteading in Dakota, arriving in 1882. Includes mention of Bartlett, Harrisburg, Wamduska, N.D. and freight hauling between Larimore and Fort Totten.
  • Field, Merton (Mss 28) Merton Field was a Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin physician and NDSU graduate. His papers consist of correspondence, writings, autobiography and newspaper clippings. The autobiography, "By Many Trails," is a typed transcription (131 p.) relating Mr. Field's childhood and college days to include his father, Jacob A. Field, ranch life near Bismarck, ND, herding cattle, schooling, death of his teacher in a blizzard, prairie fires, Nick Spain, his dog "Mac," school years at North Dakota Agricultural College, and reflections on his life.
  • Green, Martha E. (SC 55) Photocopy of pioneer life reminiscences by Martha E. Green; includes mention of wheat harvest, fuel sources, 1888 blizzard.
  • Grimstad, Carl M. (Mss 162) Carl Grimstad was a Walsh County, ND pioneer. The collection consists of a handwritten copy of his manuscript "Life in Dakota Territory, from 1879 to 1887," concerning his experience as a pioneer settler in Walsh County.
  • Hoag, Simon (Mss 643) Simon Hoag was a Cass County, ND pioneer. The collection consists of correspondence (1907-1926) and records relating to the Dakota Territory, Fargo, and national Granges; and the Red River Valley Old Settlers' Association.
  • Hobart, Charles H. (Mss 227) Hobart wrote five letters in the 1930s detailing his family settling near Cummings, N.D. in the 1880s.
  • Holes, James (Mss 211) One of the earliest settlers in the Fargo area whose papers document his private and business affairs.
  • Johnson, Clara (Mss 148)
  • Johnson, Edwin (Mss 148)
  • Lamphere, George (Mss 1151) George Lamphere was a Civil War veteran and owner of Moorhead Daily News. The papers consist of a scrapbook containing clippings on government and politics, articles by Mr. Lamphere, reviews on his book, The United States Government, poems, family and other subjects.
  • Lane, George M. (SC 66) Mimeographed typed copy of Lane family history (2 leaves) by Cora Lane Kellogg entitled "George M. Lane family, early settlers in Dickey County, North Dakota," which includes their move to North Dakota and daughter Cora's marriage to Willard E. Kellogg in 1890; "Reminiscences of pioneer days in Dickey County, North Dakota," (1 leaf) by Cora Lane Kellogg concerns a false Indian scare and buying new shoes; "Cattle rustlers in Dickey County, North Dakota," (1 leaf) by George E. Lane which refers to an 1895 incident in Dickey County. Copyright
  • Lindgren, H. Elaine (Mss 292 & Tapes 537-563 & Oversize Collection 4) Research papers of NDSU Sociology professor H. Elaine Lindgren related primarily to her books Land in Her Own Name: Women as Homesteaders in North Dakota, "Coal, Cuba, and Courage: The Adventuresome Spirit of Annie C. Lind," Work Makes Life Sweet, Or Does It?, and The Rural Mystique. The Land in Her Own Name files contain extensive research and documents related to women homesteaders in North Dakota.
  • Losk, Charles (Mss 76) Charles Losk was a Jewish immigrant from Russia who homesteaded at Watford City, N.D. and later became a merchant there.
  • Madsen, Iver (Mss 507) Iver Madson was a Danish immigrant and Wheatland, N.D. homesteader. The collection is a manuscript of Madson's recollections, dictated to his daughter, concerning his twelve years at sea, four years in New Zealand, immigration (1871) to America from Denmark, and farming in Minnesota before homesteading in Dakota Territory. Also included are newspaper clippings on the Madson family.
  • McCauley, David (Mss 329) Postmaster, express agent and army sutler for Fort Abercrombie.
  • McKendry, Norman (SC 60) Photocopy of historical sketch by Norman McKendry, a grandson, recounting pioneer events and people of the Sims and Mandan, N.D. area. Includes some family information on Jarvis and Rebecca Estrop who settled in this area.
  • Morgan, N. C. (Norman C.) (SC 1) Typed copy of a poem about Jasper B. Chapin, referred to as the "Father of Fargo," written in 1896 by N.C. (Norman C.) Morgan after Chapin's death. Poem appeared in Fargo Forum & Daily Republican.
  • Olson, Ole A. (Mss 79) Ole A. Olson was a North Dakota poet and writer. The collection consists of biographical material, the original typescript copy (238 p.) of his autobiography, poems by himself and others, and his manuscript, "One Day on a Territorial Homestead.
  • Pearce, Gladys M. (Mss 845) Her manuscript "Claimed by the Prairies" (187 p.) covers the life of her grandmother Winnie Winston Nicholls (1830-1914) dealing particularly with her life after 1873 as a Bismarck pioneer. Among people mentioned are Alexander McKenzie, Dennis Hannifin, Calamity Jane, General Custer, the horse, Comanche, William Latimer, Dr. E.P. Quain, Linda Slaughter, and the Marquis de Mores. Described are travel by covered wagon, Fort Seward (Jamestown), gambling halls, the removal of the capital to Bismarck, the 1898 fire, Negro settlements, statehood, Camp Hancock, early schools, social life of Bismarck, scenes in early Montana and many other subjects.
  • Petrie, Wallace E. (Mss 801) Wallace Petrie was an Emmons County, ND pioneer. The papers include material on homesteading in Dakota Territory, his sister's ranch and Petrie family clippings.
  • Probstfield, Randolph M., (SC 30) This collection contains newspaper clippings, biographical articles about Randolph Probstfield, a family tree, a letter written by Probstfield regarding buffalo in Clay County, and correspondence between Probstfield’s granddaughter, Edris Hack (the main donator of materials) and the curators of the Institute for Regional Studies at the time of the accession.
  • Rutledge, Fred S. (Mss 222) Fred Rutledge was a Walsh County, N.D. homesteader. His papers include correspondence; family histories of Becker, Canfield, Dickison, Harrison, Hudson, Lindell, Rutledge, and Wheelock families; his handwritten manuscript "A Christmas Vacation in Virginia" (52 p.), and a typed copy of his manuscript "Reminiscences of Fred Rutledge" (243 p.) covering his youth and days as a lumberjack, hobo, railroadman, thresher, and farmer in Minnesota and North Dakota.
  • Shely, John J. (Mss 188) John Shely was a pioneer settler at Shelly, Minnesota.
  • Ulsaker, Sven E. (SC 143) Typed copy of his reminiscence concerning his childhood home in Norway and early years in Kindred, N.D. Includes mention of his education in Norway, his cattle buying job in Norway, immigrating to the U.S., working as a hired man for other Norwegian settlers, a bout of typhoid fever, early settlers around Kindred, N.D. and on the Sheyenne and Wild Rice Rivers, brief mention of James Hill, and the Norman Lutheran Church.
  • Waldo, Edna LaMoore (SC 5) Review of "Dakota", copies of "Pageant of the Missouri", "Sunbonnet Trail", unbound first printing of "Dakota", several letters, biographical and genealogical material on the Dearborn, Freeman, and LaMoore families, and several articles from her "Way Back When" series including Fort Rice, Fort Lincoln, Linda Slaughter, Custer, 7th Cavalry, and expeditions to survey for expansion of the railroads.
  • Williams, Mary Ann Barnes (SC 131) Correspondence and reminiscences, relating to General George Custer, the Battle of the Little Big Horn, forts Buford, Mandan, and Abraham Lincoln, Sakakawea, frontier life, and North Dakota history; and newspaper articles concerning Williams.
  • Wisness, Ole A. (Mss 318)