Dakota Datebook

8:41 am, 3:50 pm, 5:44 pm, and 7:50 pm CT
  • Hosted by Prairie Public

Sitting Bull to Phil Jackson, cattle to prairie dogs, knoefla to lefse. Dakota Datebook radio features air weekdays at 8:35 am, 3:50 pm, 6:30 pm and 7:50 pm CT on Prairie Public. Find the 2003-2017 archives here.

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Dakota Datebook is is generously funded by the North Dakota Humanities Council, a nonprofit, independent state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in the program do not necessarily reflect those of the North Dakota Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.

North Dakota Marines

Jun 22, 2018

E. H. Tostevin, the Mandan soldier and newspaperman, traveled throughout France attempting to record the war as seen through the eyes of North Dakota soldiers.  In a hospital somewhere in France he met Albert T. Mastrud, a freckled-faced, nineteen-year-old from Hatton who fought near the town of Bouresche, France on this date in 1918.  He was one of sixteen North Dakota soldiers in his company from Barnes, Traill and Cass Counties who had enlisted in the Marines in May of 1917, shortly after the United States entered the war.  As they went into battle, only two of them were over 20 years of age. 

First Female

Jun 21, 2018

On this date in 1916, Esther Marie Jack from Williams County made history; she was the first female to graduate from the University of North Dakota’s college of engineering.

Jacob Horner

Jun 20, 2018

George Armstrong Custer and the 7th Cavalry will forever be remembered for the Battle of the Little Bighorn, or Greasy Grass, on June 25-26, 1876, when Custer and 263 of his men died fighting Lakota and Cheyenne warriors.

The fight did not involve every soldier in the 7th Cavalry. One of the fortunate ones was Jacob Horner.  His story was published on this date in 1936.

The 1980s were years of celebration for many towns across North Dakota. It was 100 years since the coming of the railroad that gave rise to the towns, and now they were celebrating their centennials. The Cass County town of Arthur was one of them.

On this date in 1914 the Weekly Times Record of Valley City announced on the front page that “Miss Katherine Stinson, the aviatrice” would be attending the Barnes County Fair. Miss Stinson was one of the first women in the US to earn a pilot’s certificate.


Jun 15, 2018

This is Dakota Datebook for June 15th; North Dakota remembers World War I.

By the middle of June in 1918, American troops, now numbering at over eight hundred thousand, were taking the offensive on their own and occupying sectors of the front in the Alsace area of France.  Since entering the war, American casualties were slightly over eight thousand killed, wounded or missing. The unprecedented and unceasing use of artillery created most of the carnage.

Marquis de Mores

Jun 14, 2018

The Marquis de Mores already had one heck of a personal story before he broke a bottle of wine on a tent stake and christened the town of Medora in the Dakota badlands. He was a French aristocrat born into a noble military family with Spanish lineage dating back to the conquest of Sardinia in the thirteenth century. His family also had vague connections to French royalty.

On this date in 1912, the Wahpeton Times announced that the Farmers Institute Train was scheduled to arrive at the Northern Pacific depot the following day. Sponsored by the North Dakota Agricultural College, the train was described as a farm institute on wheels. It was scheduled to stop at 42 towns in 16 days. 


Jun 12, 2018

Today, people take antibiotics like penicillin and amoxicillin for granted. But it was just back in 1945, during World War II, that the “wonder drug” called penicillin first came to North Dakota.

The annual Miss North Dakota Pageant is held in early June. It is the official preliminary contest for the Miss America Pageant that takes place in early September. Although it is traditionally known as a “beauty pageant,” physical beauty is not the reason this contest remains relevant to young women in the 21st century. Rather, it is the substantial scholarships awarded.