Tags: US State Facts | North Dakota History | International Peace Garden | North Dakota Badlands

North Dakota History: 8 Events That Shaped the State

By    |   Monday, 09 Mar 2015 09:46 AM

North Dakota gained a reputation for hunting, farming and outdoor recreation in the 1800s. Its natural resources later helped boost its economy and contribute to North Dakota history.

Here are eight events that helped shape the state of North Dakota:

1. The area that would become North Dakota was part of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. It was in a region that was also comprised of Minnesota and Nebraska before joining with South Dakota as the Dakota Territory in 1861, according to History.com.

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2. Between 1879 and 1886, more than 100,000 settlers entered the territory. The boom was mostly made up of homesteaders, but also included large farming operations that remained into the 20th Century.

3.
North Dakota and South Dakota were admitted to statehood on the same day in 1889. Each state wanted to be admitted first, and President Benjamin Harrison signed the statehood papers without looking at which one he signed first. However, North Dakota became the 39th state, ahead of South Dakota, because it came first alphabetically.

4. Theodore Roosevelt had hunted in the North Dakota Badlands and returned there for solitude in 1884 following the deaths of his wife and mother, who died the same day. In 1883 the territory helped satisfy his desire for adventure and the strenuous life, according to History.com. He credited his time there with helping him to become president. The Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota was officially established in 1947.

5. North Dakota history played a crucial role in the conservation of natural resources and animal life, particularly with the loss of the once plentiful herds of bison that roamed the area. Fewer than 600 bison remained in the area by 1900. Thanks to efforts spearheaded by President Theodore Roosevelt, some 90,000 bison roam North Dakota.

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6. The International Peace Garden includes some 2,339 acres within North Dakota and Manitoba, Canada, to represent a perpetual peace between Canada and the U.S. The attraction drew 50,000 visitors when it opened in 1932, according to History.com.

7. The Arab oil embargo of 1973 and skyrocketing gas prices through the seventies encouraged oil drilling in North Dakota. The nation's first coal gasification plant was constructed near Beulah at a cost of $2 billion. The state's economy suffered with low oil prices in the 1980s, but the oil drilling would pay off later.

8. North Dakota became the fastest growing state in the U.S. in 2012, largely due to an oil industry boom in the western part of the state. During a time of high unemployment throughout the nation, many people moved to the state for high-paying jobs. North Dakota ranks only behind Texas as a leading oil-producing state, but agriculture and farming still remain the state's biggest industries.

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North Dakota gained a reputation for hunting, farming and outdoor recreation in the 1800s. Its natural resources later helped boost its economy and contribute to North Dakota history.
North Dakota History, International Peace Garden, North Dakota Badlands
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2015-46-09
Monday, 09 Mar 2015 09:46 AM
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