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Photographs - Collections - 1001-1050 - #01028

Title: Mott Flood

Dates: 1943

Collection Number: 01028

Quantity: 25 items

Abstract: Images of the March 24, 1943 flood in Mott (N.D.)

Provenance: The State Historical Society acquired this collection from Charles Carvel in February 1993.

Property Rights: The State Historical Society of North Dakota owns the property rights to this collection.
Copyrights: Copyrights to this collection remain with the donor, publisher, author, or author's heirs.  Researchers should consult the 1976 Copyright Act, Public Law 94-553, Title 17, U.S. Code or an archivist at this repository if clarification of copyright requirements is needed.
Access:  This collection is open under the rules and regulations of the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Citation: Researchers are requested to cite the collection title, collection number, and the State Historical Society of North Dakota in all footnote and bibliographic references.

Historical Sketch
From Mott, North Dakota: A Century of History by Heather Hertz

On the night of March 24, West Mott residents were in bed when they received the news that the Cannonball River had burst its banks. The water rose quickly, making automobiles useless. Within hours, only two “vehicles” – a motorboat and a team of horses – could navigate West Mott’s streets.

By morning, the residents could view the destruction from dry ground. Water covered all of West Mott. A number of East Mott businesses, including the Mott Equity Creamery, Olien’s Repair Shop, The Wonder Hotel, and Thompson Yards, were also waterlogged. The final estimate of damages was more than $250,000.

Though a blizzard swept through the area a week before the flood, many residents dismissed the heavy snows as a factor in the disaster. Instead they pinned the blame on the Northern Pacific Railroad. In the summer of 1943, the railroad company replaced their existing dam on the Cannonball River. The dam was used to provide a reliable water source for their locomotive boilers. Mott residents claimed that the new dam caused silt to build up on the river bottom, hampering the water flow when the Cannonball began to thaw in 1943, eventually causing the flood.


01028-00001 – 00002 Flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00003       The Cannonball River over its banks
01028-00004       Flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00005       Flood scene with elevators in the distance, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00006       Ice build up from Cannonball flood
01028-00007       Methodist Episcopal Church and Mott Mill and Elevator in flood
01028-00008       Flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00009       Ice build up from Cannonball flood
01028-00010       Snow
01028-00011 – 00012 Flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00013       Man standing at flooded railroad crossing
01028-00014       Train cars in flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00015       Snow and flood waters, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00016       Inundated cars and homes, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00017       View of Elevators and M.E. Church, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00018       Western Lumber and Grain Co. elevator in flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00019       Ice chunks at Rainbow Arch Bridge, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00020       Flood waters at Mill and Elevator and Cannonball River sign, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00021       Flood waters at Mill and Elevator, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00022       Ice build up from Cannonball flood, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00023 – 00024 Flood waters at Rainbow Arch Bridge, Mott (N.D.) March 1943
01028-00025       Red Cross flag outside Commercial Bank and Pool Hall, Mott (N.D.) March 1943

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