"History Comes to Life on the Talking Trail..."

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Imagine the journey of the families whose names can still be read here at the Lake Hoskins Historic Settlement Marker..  The 17th and 18th centuries in Germany were difficult times.

Lake Hoskins Settlement Marker - Tri-County Alliance
St. Andrew's White Colonial Revival Church

St. Andrews, like so many rural churches of its day, has provided the loving arms of support to a devoted congregation. Hear her story today!

Beacon on the Prairie - Talking Trail
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On Christmas Day in 1894, Emmons County residents Sherman Suverly and Eleanor Clark were married. Sherman, who operated the local riverboat, played an important role in Emmons County history...

Emmons County Museum - Talking Trail

Welcome to the Old St. Mary’s Cemetery which was founded here in 1884, on the grounds of the original St. Mary’s Catholic Church site. You will notice grave markers of concrete, marble, cast iron, and hand-crafted iron.

Old St. Mary's Cemetery - Talking Trail
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Hello,  Welcome to Prairie Bible Camp.    The camp was founded in 1921 by the Bismarck District of the Evangelical Church. The purpose was to satisfy the need expressed...

Lehr Tabernacle - Talking Trail
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The majority of people of the Strasburg area descended from southern Germans who left Germany in the 18th and 19th centuries for the Black Sea region of the Ukraine...

St. Peter and Paul Historic Church - Talking Trail
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Braddock, North Dakota, settled in 1883, is the oldest town in Emmons County. And if you want to see firsthand how your ancestors printed the newspaper and harvested the fields...

Threshing Grounds - Talking Trail
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On a spring day in 1898, Wilhelmina Geiszler watched from her home as flames burned on the horizon. Wind blew smoke across the prairie where her husband, John, was out plowing the fields.

Wilhelmina Geiszler - Tri-County Alliance
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Imagine if tombstones could talk... Now, you don't have to... The names on these cemetery markers represent the founding members of German-Russian community in North Dakota... 

If Tombstones Could Talk - Talking Trail
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Here at the Logan County Historical Museum you will find a country school that looks just like it would have back in the 30’s and 40’s with maps and a chalkboard on the wall. 

Logan County Museum - Talking Trail
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Welcome to the community of Zeeland and to Zeeland Hall. We are grateful for our community’s forefathers, who came first from densely populated Germany to the vast grasslands of Russia...

Zeeland Hall - Talking Trail
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Easily visible on the surrounding plains, the McIntosh County Courthouse showcases elegant architecture, including the ornate rotunda you see adorning the courthouse like a crown.

McIntosh County Courthouse - Talking Trail
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The machines you see winding up the hill on Custer’s Ridge may look and seem as old as dinosaurs, but not so long ago they were an essential part of agricultural life in North Dakota...

Dinosaurs on the Prairie - Talking Trail

Welcome to Burnstad, North Dakota. While it is a ghost town today, it was once a flourishing town on the Soo Line Railroad. To uncover the story behind the once bustling community...

Burnstad Ghost Town - Talking Trail
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The first settlement of Germans from Russia arrived in South Dakota in 1872, and twelve years later, in 1884, the first settlement of Germans from Russia arrived in North Dakota just north of Zeeland.

St. John's Cemetery Feist Graves - Tri-County Alliance
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When the builders of this stone church arrived in the Dakota Territory in 1884, leaving their beautiful, well-established villages in South Russia, they were unsure of what their future would hold... 

Sankt Andreas Gemeinde - Talking Trail
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The building of the Wishek Civic Center was started in the year 1940, thanks to the benefits from the Works Progress Administration or WPA.

Wishek Civic Center - Talking Trail
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The year was 1883, and the original location of the Emmons County Courthouse was where else, but at the county seat of Emmons County, in Williamsport, ND.

Emmons County Courthouse - Talking Trail
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The McIntosh Heritage Center was established in 1978 and is located in the heart of North Dakota’s German Russian country...

McIntosh Heritage Center - Talking Trail
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Today, a one-stop flight from the United States to Russia can take as few as twelve hours. But in 1889, when Martin and Katharina Schwab emigrated from Odessa...

Schwab Sodhouse - Talking Trail
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Herzlich Wilkommen at Welk Homestead, a German-Russian farm and the birthplace of bandleader and TV host Lawrence Welk...

Welk Homestead Site 1 - Talking Trail
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Ludwig learned blacksmithing from his father back in South Russia, and he taught it to most of his sons here. Lawrence later claimed that he was the exception because Ludwig considered him too clumsy to learn!

Welk Homestead - Talking Trail
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St. Mary's Catholic Church in Hague, built in 1930, is one of the most beautiful churches in North Dakota. It stands as a testament to the enduring faith of the members, past and present..

St. Mary's Church - Talking Trail
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 Life wasn’t easy when the Germans from Russia settlers arrived in North Dakota in 1884. During those first years, the people were extremely poor and suffered great hardships

St. John's Catholic Church Memorial - Talking Trail
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Here at the Logan County Historical Museum you will find a country school that looks just as it would have back in the 30's and 40's with maps and a chalkboard on the wall. There's even a...

Logan County Museum - Talking Trail
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The city of Napoleon, Dakota Territory was founded in 1884, and named after Napoleon Goodsill, a pioneer store keeper and president of the townsite board

Logan County Courthouse - Talking Trail

This 283 acre park, on the shore of what is locally known as Red Lake, has a colorful history relating to the early settlers of Logan, McIntosh, and Emmons counties...

Beaver Lake State Park - Talking Trail
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Welcome to the historic Ashley Fire Hall, which was restored by a grant from the State Historical Society of North Dakota, and houses impressive artifacts on the ground floor; upstairs is a meeting room, once the venue for...

Ashley Fire Hall - Talking Trail
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On March 10th, 1917 Valentine Keller took out an ad in the Aberdeen American Newspaper that read, "I will open my new and strictly modern hotel at Strasburg, ND. I cordially invite the patronage of the public...

Keller Hotel - Talking Trail
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What could be better on a Friday or Saturday afternoon during the old frontier days than going to a baseball game? Imagine if your dad played, how excited you would have been to watch...

Zeeland Arch - Talking Trail
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In 1898, the northern part of McIntosh County was a black strip of prairie with the occasional shack or rancher's home dotting the landscape. Later, however, the influx of homesteaders and early...

St. Luke's Lutheran Church - Talking Trail
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Welcome to the Elise Perras Museum, which served as the first post office, a millinery shop and home of Hazelton's first postmaster, Elise Perras. While her story is a tragic one, it also serves to...

Elise Perras House - Talking Trail
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The beginning of the Zion Lutheran Church seems to have been a slow process, as most beginnings are, and Zion is no exception. Around the year 1885 Reverend Friedrich Preu of...

Zion Lutheran Church - Talking Trail
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Welcome to Beaver Lake State Park, still commonly known as Red Lake. When thinking back to the homesteaders and pioneers of North Dakota, one often imagines the sod houses, the horse drawn wagons, or the difficult winters...

Gordon Hoberg Story - Talking Trail
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The founders of Friedens Lutheran Community began to meet in one another's homes beginning in 1895. They were German emigrants from the Black Sea area of South Russia...

Friedens Cemetery - Talking Trail

German-Russian Country is the heartland of the Black Sea Germans, Germans from Russia who settled on the Great Plains of North America. The Germans from Russia are among the most visible and vibrant ethnic immigrant cultures of the plains. Three counties in South Central North Dakota — Emmons, Logan and McIntosh — are at the center of German-Russian Country, and we are proud to share that rich history along their Talking Trail... #ExperienceTheStory