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Butte St. Paul


On this date in 1935, about 50 acres surrounding Butte St. Paul, near Dunseith, was deeded to the state as an historic site. Back in the winter of 1850, a bitter winter storm hit the area, and to thank God for deliverance, Father George Belcourt erected a wooden cross at the top of the butte.

In the previous two years, Father Belcourt had sided with the mixed-blood Metis against the Hudson Bay Company over import duties; the company drove him away, so the priest went to Montreal to seek help and money to continue his work among the Metis.

The Great American Trails website states, “Butte St. Paul is one of the must-see sites on North Dakota’s Turtle Mountain Scenic Byway... one of the highest points in the Turtle Mountains, offering spectacular views...”

Dakota Datebook written by Merry Helm