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Dakota Datebook
6:42 am, 8:42 am, 3:50 pm*, 5:44 pm, and 7:50 pm* CT

Sitting Bull to Phil Jackson, cattle to prairie dogs, knoefla to lefse.

You can find all Dakota Datebooks from 2018-today below. Our archive of Datebooks from 2003-2017 can be found here.

Dakota Datebook is made in partnership with the Historical Society of North Dakota, and 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.

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  • In 1990, the president of the University of North Dakota, Thomas Clifford, took on the additional task of serving as Interim Chancellor of the newly formed North Dakota University System. After what must have been a busy eight months, Clifford stepped down on this date in 1991. For many, the work involved in managing both major academic bodies would have been overwhelming, but for Clifford, the fast pace was par for the course.
  • A primary election was held on this date in 1910 in North Dakota, except the date was advertised incorrectly multiple times in Billings County Newspapers.
  • June is arguably the best month of summer for fishing and for “going to the lake.” Many North Dakotans flock to home-state lakes – Sakakawea, Lake Darling, Spiritwood, Stump, Metigoshe. Folks near the Red River often head into Minnesota. It was on this date, in 1889, that the Bismarck Tribune related some of the happenings on Big Detroit Lake, when North Dakotans were in a whirl of lakeshore fun, jam-packed with boating, relaxation, bathing and angling.
  • The National Statuary Hall is one of the most popular locations in the U.S Capitol Building, with tourists flocking year-’round to see the collection of statues from across the 50 states. The hall is one of the earliest examples of Greek revival architecture in America. The hall has the shape of an ancient amphitheater, with pilasters made of sandstone and columns made of Breccia marble quarried along the Potomac River. The Corinthian columns were carved from white marble in Carrara, Italy.
  • In recent years, we have grown increasingly aware of “green” terms, reducing carbon footprints, and improving energy efficiency, to the point where many of these environmentally-friendly terms have been added to the dictionary. But progress and energy efficiency have been goals longer than that.
  • On this date in 1923, an article in the Bismarck Tribune invited the “Ford Family” to compete for prizes in a special event. Although Ford Day would include a special greeting from Henry Ford, the “Ford Family” referred to meant Ford vehicle owners. The sponsor, Copelin Motor Company, would be giving a free touring car to one lucky registrant.
  • The morning edition of the Fargo Forum on June 26, 1957, continued the harrowing news of the massive tornado that struck the city. The banner headline of the newspaper trumpeted “Red Cross Says At Least $250,000 Needed for Tornado Victims Here.”
  • On this date in 1907 a puzzling crime investigation by the Devils Lake police department came to a satisfying ending. The crime was first considered unsolvable, but the police nabbed the culprit after some clever sleuthing.
  • Protest can take many forms. From a singular person starving on a doorstep to thousands flooding the streets, people have many ways of making their voices heard. One interesting North Dakota protest occurred on this date in 2006, involving three men dressed as clowns at the site of a nuclear missile silo near the Minot Airforce Base.
  • On this date in 1991 The Bismarck Tribune reported on the 100th anniversary celebration for Merricourt, North Dakota. A parade was held for the entire population, which was a grand total of two. Emil and Elsie Geisler were the only residents, but 1,500 people joined the couple in the celebration.