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Manuscripts - ND Oral History Collection - 10157 - Morton County

Morton County

Region 3
1 Mrs. Nancy Hendrickson, Mandan
2 Miss Palma Friestad, Mandan
3 Mr. Nels Porsberg, Mandan
4 Mrs. Mary Schafer, Bismarck
5 Mrs. Julia Massey, Mandan
6 Mrs. John Stading, Bismarck
7 Mrs. Jennie Beers, Bismarck
8 Mr. and Mrs. Louis Tokach, St. Anthony
9 Mr. and Mrs. Joe Haider, St. Anthony
10 Mr. Ernest Keidel, Mandan
11 Mrs. Alice Conitz, New Salem
12 Mr. and Mrs. Charles Friese, New Salem
13 Mr. and Mrs. Nels Pederson, Brien
14 Mr. and Mrs. T. A. Barstad, Almont
15 Mr. Pete Thorson, Almont
16 Mr. August Ketterling, Hebron
17 Mr. H.J. Bahr, Glen Ullin
18 Mr. Fritz Leutz, Hebron
19 Mrs. Edith Skjolvich, Almont
20 Mr. Art Olin, New Salem
21 Mr. and Mrs. Ulrich Buchli, Hebron
22 Mr. Kurt Krauth, Hebron
23 Mr. Lyle Dawson, Flasher
24 Mr. Matt Schmidt, Flasher
25 Mr. Carl Metzger, Bismarck
26 Mr. and Mrs. George Heidt, Mandan
27 Pauline Meher Diede, Hebron
28 Charles J. Cadoo, Mandan
29 Anne Bucklin, Mandan
30 Mr. and Mrs. Oscar Carlson, Mandan
31 Isadore and Margaret Smith, Lake Metigoshe
32 Charles Grantier, Mandan
33 Mrs. Agnes Schmidt, Mandan
34 Mrs. Agnes Aronson, Rural Mandan

Portions of the following interviews apply to Morton County:
Bert Gwyther, #10, Sioux County
Mrs. Rae Matthes, #17, Ransom County
Hans Madsen, #5, Richland County
Esther Rosenau, #13, Burleigh County
Dr. P. W. Friese, #15, Burleigh County
Joe Robidou, #21, Burleigh County
C. L. Robertson, #7, Stutsman County

Tape #1
Mrs. Nancy Hendrickson
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history
078 – Her parent’s homestead
093 – Homesteaders in the Mandan area
130 – Her parent’s homestead; Family history
141 – Negro homesteaders in the area
173 – Reading material in their farm home in the early 1900’s
197 – Negro homesteaders; Family life
221 – Sources of fuel
239 – Gardening
252 – Wildlife in the area in 1900
283 – Fishing in the Heart River; Floods
308 – Birds in the area in 1900
344 – Her homestead and the tree nursery she started
390 – Death and burial of a homesteader’s baby; Burial of people before cemeteries existed
460 – A traveling pastor who visited homesteaders; Early churches
490 – Preserving food
555 – Slaughtering and dressing pigeons and poultry
604 – Bartering at grocery stores during the early 1900’s
632 – Early transportation methods – horses, motorcycles, bicycles
727 – Her land holdings
764 – Rural schools
838 – Sowing and threshing grain by hand
879 – Raising poultry; Planting corn and potatoes
938 – SIDE TWO
955 – Keeping milk cows in Mandan
990 – Rattlesnakes
008 – Social life and recreation
025 – Relations with Indians; Frank Fisk
123 – Her hobby of photography in the early 1900’s
174 – Supporting herself and her mother; Family history
209 – Photographing animals
319 – Making a living during the 1930’s; Gardening
345 – Sewing and making clothes
400 – Her father’s carpentry work and the homestead
428 – Early Mandan
469 – First telephone system in the area
509 – Doctors and early medical care
550 – The Medora Hotel
587 – Neighborliness of people, formerly and presently
619 – Family life in the early 1900’s
703 – Comments on strip-mining coal
717 – Gathering buffalo bones
816 – Buffalo in Roosevelt National Park, 1910-1920
861 – Her marriage
880 – End of interview
Comment:  This is an informative interview throughout.  Mrs. Hendrickson’s most vivid recollections are of her photographic work, wildlife, and homestead life.

Tape #2 Miss Palma Friestad
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history
090 – The size and use of her parent’s homestead land
110 – Sources of water on the homestead; Buffalo trails
146 – Family history
154 – Her schooling
164 – Wildlife during the early 1900’s
180 – Other homesteaders in the area
194 – Her education; Teaching and working for the Mandan Pioneer
221 – Nationalities in early Mandan; Reasons for some of the immigrants coming to North Dakota; Account of an English homesteader and his wife from India
293 – The “grit” of homesteaders
343 – Harmon, ND (former town north of Mandan)
375 – Frederick Gerard, first homesteader in Mandan
414 – Account of a Mr. Henry, a trapper near Ft. Lincoln
435 – Anecdote about Pierre Verendrye
476 – Early Mandan businessmen
518 – Stories about the first white children born in Mandan and Morton County
555 – Relations between Indians and homesteaders
584 – First M.D. in Mandan and early businesses
619 – The Inter-Ocean Hotel in Mandan; Other early buildings
640 – Construction of the NPRR; Chinese workers
689 – First wheat shipped out of Mandan
710 – Construction of railroad branch line
715 – Fort McKeen; Sitting Bull’s visits to Mandan and his death and burial
785 – Organization of Morton County and its temporary annexation to Burleigh County
855 – Early Mandan; Fight over the name of the village; Trial of the Marquis de Mores; First County Courthouse in Mandan
954 – SIDE TWO
961 – Early businessmen in Mandan; The Mandan town herd of milk cows
112 – The Kent murder in early Mandan
144 – Telegraph and telephone service in Mandan; The city’s population at various periods and its early history – businesses, civic clubs, and important events
288 – Account of a woman who died in a blizzard
344 – Her father’s support and later opposition to Bill Langer
395 – Her father’s farming methods
427 – Threshing
436 – Social life and recreation
473 – Harmon, ND
483 – The average size farm in 1910
515 – Farming during the 1930’s; Gardening and preserving food
552 – Her mother’s sale of farm produce in Mandan; The Mandan flour mill
634 – Anecdotes about her Norwegian mother
674 – Her opinion of coal development
735 – End of interview
Comment:  Miss Friestad read much of this information from old newspapers

Tape #3 Mr. Nels Porsberg (Oliver County)
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history
032 – Farming in the 1930’s
047 – Family history; His parents homestead near Center
069 – His schooling
091 – Grasshoppers and drought in the 1930’s
101 – Farming and crop yields from 1915 to 1930
119 – His parent’s homestead; Farming with horses; Early farm machinery
137 – Threshing time
220 – Neighborliness and cooperation of people, formerly and presently
244 – Towns where they sold grain; Hauling grain with horses
310 – Early gas tractors
336 – Organizing the Nonpartisan League; His admiration for Langer
408 – The Farm Holiday Association; Program of the NPL
445 – His opinion of North Dakota politics in general
472 – Farmers’ opinions of the grain trade in the early 1900’s
502 – Problems of organizing farmers; The Farmers Union
568 – Farmers’ discontent over freight rates and grain speculators
619 – Sources of farm income during the 1930’s
675 – His wife’s family history
724 – SIDE TWO
736 – Raising a family during the 1930’s; Social life and baseball games
804 – Account of an abandoned town in Oliver County
822 – Early motorcycles and automobiles
845 – 32 volt wind chargers; Early telephone system in Center, ND
886 – Family history
896 – Shopping in Center and New Salem; Selling grain
909 – Feeding and selling cattle in the 1930’s
947 – Nationalities and churches in the Center area
976 – Size of the average farm in 1920; Opinion of large farms
030 – His opinions of coal development
061 – Reflections on North Dakota and on natural resource development
142 – End of interview
Comment:  This is an informative interview throughout.  Mr. Porsberg is articulate, has a good memory, and expanded upon the topics outlined above.

Tape #4 Mrs. Mary Schafer
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history; Her parent’s homestead south of Mandan
086 – Early settlers in the area south of Mandan
095 – Recollections of early Mandan
111 – Her education and work as a teacher in Mandan
137 – Preserving food
160 – Recollections of early settlers and of Indian “scares”
202 – Early school teachers
214 – Her marriage and children
226 – Making a living during the 1930’s; Teaching school
248 – Changes she has seen in Mandan; Leading businessmen in Mandan
265 – Family history; Her brother’s work in the Mandan roundhouse
303 – Thoughts on North Dakota and her life in the rest home
316 – Neighborliness of people, formerly and presently
335 – Her husband’s bar, “Henry’s Place,” in Mandan
364 – Nationalities in Mandan
373 – Her schooling in Mandan
392 – Sewing and tutoring to make money during the 1930’s
405 – Stores and businesses in early Mandan
421 – Milking cows; Ice boxes; The ice wagon
450 – Sources of fuel for heating
467 – Early telephone system in Mandan
490 – Raising children during the 1930’s
517 – Memories of Langer’s speeches; The flu epidemic of 1918
559 – Her recent life in the rest home
591 – Her opinion of coal development
624 – Harsh winters; Getting to school
660 – Disciplining pupils, formerly and presently
675 – Activities at Mandan High School in the early 1900’s
690 – The Pioneer Daughters organization
716 – End of interview
Comment:  Mrs. Schafer has a good memory but does not volunteer information very freely. Her responses to questions are very brief, making this interview somewhat choppy.

Tape #5 Mrs. Julia Massey
000 – Introduction
020 – Nationalities in the Mandan area; Irish settlers
035 – Family history; Her father’s work on the steam boats on the Missouri and his homestead south of Mandan; Anecdote about her mother’s fear of Indians
122 – Sources of wood for log buildings and for fuel; Her father’s dray line and sand business and his work on the NPRR
162 – Family history; Her sister’s death
172 – Crossing the Heart River; Home-made footbridge; Floods; Her husband’s death by drowning in the Missouri River in 1917
221 – Raising children after her husband’s death; Her work on the NPRR as a freight agent
270 – Her mother
290 – General description of early Mandan, its trading area, and the flour mill
341 – Shipping freight out of Mandan to small towns in North Dakota
360 – Her father’s and husband’s cement and sand business
399 – Her courtship and marriage
415 – The Welsh dairy near Mandan
428 – Her experience as a school teacher at Ft. Lincoln school and at Ft. Rice; Account of people who dismantled buildings at Ft. Lincoln for the lumber after the Fort was abandoned
489 – Gardening and preserving food
556 – The Mandan town herd; Livery stables
615 – Early hotels and grocery stores in Mandan
645 – Happiness and neighborliness of people, formerly and presently
679 – Social life and recreation; The American Emerson Institute
704 – Family history; Her work for the NPRR
815 – Her husband’s work as a Maxwell car salesman in Mandan
884 – Steam engines and threshing machines
919 – Making a living during the 1930’s; WPA projects
037 – “Blind Pigs” in Mandan; Home brew
086 – Neighborliness of people, formerly and presently; Social life, The Chautauqua
202 – Chinese settlers and Negroes in early Mandan
316 – Rivalry between Mandan and Bismarck
325 – Early Mandan stores and businesses
348 – Relations between whites and Indians
380 – Midwives in Mandan; Early churches and priests
420 – Neighborliness of people; Nationalities in Mandan; Street lighting in early years
538 – Fires in Mandan; The flu epidemic of 1918
575 – Dust storms during the 1930’s; Water wells in Mandan
640 – Morale during the 1930’s
677 – Hard times; Family history
701 – Her opinion of coal development
747 – Story of meeting Theodore Roosevelt
780 – The County Fair in early Mandan
859 – End of interview
Comment:  This interview contains considerable historical information about Mandan, but it is scattered throughout the tape.  Her memory is excellent.

Tape #6  Mrs. John Stading
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history and her parent’s homestead; Some accounts of South Russia
112 – Nationalities in the Glen Ullin area
138 – Buildings on the homestead; Home-made bricks
188 – Attending a rural school
245 – Appearance of the Glen Ullin area about 1910; Harsh winters
304 – Family history; Anecdotes about hard times, 1910-1920
367 – Threshing with horsepower; Her father’s blacksmith work
382 – Gardening on the homestead and preserving food
451 – Fuel sources; Coal mining by farmers
481 – Account of Eagles Nest, ND
491 – Her parent’s move to Hebron and work in the livery stable; Her impressions of early Hebron
546 – Nationalities in Hebron; The Hebron brick works; Community activities
649 – Coal mines near Hebron; The brick works
730 – Her parent’s home in Hebron; General description of early Hebron
737 – SIDE TWO
814 – The flu epidemic of 1918; Death of her father; Medical care
869 – Making a living for the family after her father’s death; Her work in an M.D.’s office, in a store in Hebron, and as a housemaid
018 – The Shaftner ranch near the Knife River and other ranches in the area
038 – Family history
054 – Her courtship and marriage
094 – Social life and entertainment; Church activities
194 – Neighborliness of people, formerly and presently; Family life; Sledding and sleighing; Churches in the Glen Ullin area
385 – The Hebron brick works; How bricks were once made
472 – End of interview

Tape #7 Mrs. Jennie Beers
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history
066 – First impressions of North Dakota; Relations with Indians
083 – Her schooling
090 – Harsh winters and poor crop years; Her parent’s farm; Family history
130 – Her schooling
145 – Description of the area north of Mandan in the early 1900’s; Early settlers and cattle ranchers in the area
198 - Buying supplies; Sources of water on the homestead; Gardening and cooking
293 – Threshing with horsepower machines; Early farming methods
350 – McGillick’s store in Mandan; Selling butter; Her annual trip to Mandan; Fourth of July celebrations
400 – Early settlers in the area; Family life; Children’s games and toys
445 – Her parent’s farm and their sources of income
544 – Preserving food; Working with horses
580 – Hired men on their farm
621 – Her courtship and marriage
701 – Train service from Mandan to Bismarck
733 – SIDE TWO
737 – Her husband’s family history; Their marriage
771 – The flu epidemic of 1918
780 – Her husband’s well-drilling company
800 – Her children; Raising a family during the 1930’s; Morale during the Depression
856 – Her husband’s well-drilling business in Bismarck
882 – Neighborliness of people, formerly and presently; Family life
912 – Sources of fuel; Coal mines near Mandan
952 – Her father’s support for the NPL
970 – Social life; The Bohemian Hall near Mandan
015 – Wildlife during the early 1900’s
026 – Early settlers in the Mandan area
160 – Early automobiles
222 – Her impressions of Bismarck in 1919
240 – Her automobile trip to Iowa in 1916
285 – Family life; Cost of renting a home in Bismarck in 1919
322 – Recollections of Nancy Hendrickson in rodeos
432 – End of interview

Tape #8 Mr. and Mrs. Louis Tokach
000 – Introduction
021 – His family history; His parent’s homestead near St. Anthony; Purchasing supplies for the homestead and preserving meat; Making sauerkraut and pickles
252 – Wildlife in the area during the early 1900’s; Wintering horses on open range; Raising horses and farming with horses
302 – Size of farms during the early 1900’s
317 – Description of Schmidt, ND; Purchasing supplies in Mandan and selling cream, butter, and eggs in St. Anthony
367 – Harsh winters; His schooling
440 – Threshing
487 – Making hay
510 – Relations between whites and Indians
556 – The Morton County Fair; Raising and selling hogs
619 – Expansion of his father’s homestead
635 – His work as a mail carrier
655 – Prohibition, bootlegging, and home brew
720 – His work as a rural mail carrier and his store and bar in St. Anthony
765 – Businesses and prominent people in early St. Anthony; The 1930’s in St. Anthony
871 – Social life in St. Anthony
898 – Nationalities in the St. Anthony area; Social life and baseball
942 – SIDE TWO
011 – Family life in former years; Name day parties
044 – Their marriage and children; Raising a family during the 1930’s
058 – Sources of water and fuel; Coal mines in the area
119 – Flu epidemic of 1918; Home remedies for illnesses; Midwives in the area and early medical care
192 – The Nonpartisan League’s popularity in the area; Bill Langer; His father’s work as a NPL organizer
275 – His service as Morton County Assessor and County Commissioner
319 – His opinion of coal development
358 – Their children
399 – His first automobile
412 – Obtaining electrical service; Wind chargers
426 – Her schooling; Her family history and their homestead south of Mandan
500 – Her work as a housemaid; Family history
567 – Comments on early Mandan and businesses
590 – Butchering hogs and preserving meat; Home remedies for illnesses; Early medical care and doctors; Midwives
704 – Morale during the 1930’s; Diet of people in the 1930’s; Rationing during WWII
764 – Social life in early St. Anthony; Community halls; Dances; Churches and religion
820 – End of interview

Tape #9 Mr. and Mrs. Joe Haider
000 – Introduction
020 – His family history and his parent’s homestead; Early farming methods and machinery; Threshing
103 – Early settlers in the St. Anthony area
126 – His education and the Catholic church he attended; Early priests at the St. Anthony Catholic Church
181 – His parent’s homestead; Log buildings; Family history
200 – Threshing with horsepower and steam rigs; Grain prices and the purchasing power of a dollar in the early 1900’s; Good and poor crop years
316 – Their marriage and children; The flu epidemic of 1918
333 – His farm; Gardening and butchering; Making sauerkraut
415 – Early telephone service to farms
464 – Preserving vegetables
470 – Her family history and their homestead south of St. Anthony; Rural school teachers
610 – Her parent’s farm; Selling cream and eggs in St. Anthony
670 – Her parent’s annual trip to Mandan; Hauling grain
729 – SIDE TWO
731 – Support for the Nonpartisan League in the area
758 – Shopping in Mandan; The 1930’s; Feeding cattle in the 1930’s
793 – Sources of fuel – Wood and coal; Local coal mines
812 – Generating electricity with a Delco plant
825 – His first tractor
846 – Social life
865 – Travels through the area by Indians and horse traders in the early 1900’s
893 – County agents; Improved grain varieties
927 – End of interview
Comment:  Mr. and Mrs. Haider tended to give brief and general responses to questions.  Their recollections of threshing are the most informative portions of the interview.

Tape #10 Mr. Ernest Keidel
000 – Introduction
020 – Family history; His father’s homestead south of Mandan
080 – Nationalities in the area and their religious sects
100 – Family history; His schooling and rural schools in general
211 – Local coal mines
259 – Construction of sod and log houses; Stealing lumber from Fort Lincoln
307 – Mandan’s trade area in the early 1900’s – includes an account of a murder; Supplies that homesteaders purchased
405 – Gardening and preserving food; The flour mill in Mandan and New Salem; Fish peddlers
487 – Railroad service in Mandan
515 – Missouri River floods in Mandan
578 – Negro families in early Mandan
598 – Account of a murder near Mandan in 1898; The Kent murder
628 – Railroad freight service
691 – The end of open range in the Mandan area; Pasturing cattle
742 – White relations with Indians in the early 1900’s
802 – Land use in the early 1900’s; Early farming methods; “Wrong side up” story; Crops planted in the early 1900’s
940 – SIDE TWO
984 – Planting crops and gardens by the moon phases; Changes in farming methods and machinery
065 – Threshing time; Steam engines
128 – Large cattle ranchers in the early 1900’s; Improving livestock breeds
169 – County agents help to farmers; Farmers’ resistance to the agent’s suggestions
282 – Early electrical plants on farms; 32 volt milking machine systems; Obtaining REA lines to the farm
366 – Telephone service in the 1920’s; The telephone system in Mandan
426 – Support for the Nonpartisan League among farmers; Opposition to Women’s suffrage
494 – Rural churches in the area; The old Catholic church in St. Anthony
580 – Changes in religious observance and belief since the early 1900’s

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