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First Celebration in Almont


On this day in 1906, the town of Almont prepared for its first celebration. Named after the buttes in the area, and laid out according to the railroad lines, the new town of Almont was built in just five weeks. Citizens of Almont and its visitors were amazed to see prairie pasture land transformed into a town in such a short period of time. The new town had 9 city blocks, and it boasted five businesses – a grain elevator, which could store 40,000 bushels of wheat, the C.H. Chase lumber yard, the Chalmers Hotel, De Vaul’s store and Sherwood’s restaurant.

People came from all directions for the festivities, with Almont boasting a crowd of around 300 citizens and visitors that day. The group crowded into a large lumber shed at the C.H. Chase lumber yard to hear the town’s first church service. A Presbyterian missionary, the Reverend Hughes, had made the journey all the way from New Salem to preach that day. The church-goers filled every available bench, stood, or simply sat on the ground to hear the Reverend Hughes’ inspiring message. After the church service, the townspeople and church-goers were treated to a picnic dinner, followed by a concert from a Bohemian band.

The highlight of the day was a baseball game between the towns of Sims and Almont. The Sims team, sporting red uniforms, were well known in the area as an “outstanding” baseball team. The players from Almont, coming from town and country, sported overalls as their uniforms. The Almont boys had the disadvantage as they had seldom played together, or even practiced much. However, after 9 innings, the score was tied, 2 to 2. Almont then scored in the 10th and was declared the winner. Victory for Almont!

The town of Almont, still in existence, celebrated its 100th birthday in 2006. The 87 or so remaining citizens of the town threw a huge celebration for its guests and past citizens, with over 2000 people arriving for the Almont Annual Labor Day celebration. As in 1906, the town of Almont celebrates with the finest.

Dakota Datebook written by Jill Whitcomb

Sources: Morton Prairie Roots- Marion Plath Peterson

Almont, ND Centennial website- http://www.almont.us/centennialhome.html