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Education
History

Dakota Datebook

Education
History
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Stories of things that happened in North Dakota and vicinity. Sitting Bull to Phil Jackson, cattle to prairie dogs, knoefla to lefse. 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.

Read more

Stories of things that happened in North Dakota and vicinity. Sitting Bull to Phil Jackson, cattle to prairie dogs, knoefla to lefse. 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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Cover image of Dakota Datebook

Dakota Datebook

Read more

Stories of things that happened in North Dakota and vicinity. Sitting Bull to Phil Jackson, cattle to prairie dogs, knoefla to lefse. 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.

Top Episodes

Most Popular Episodes of Dakota Datebook

Rank #1: Theodore Roosevelt's Wildlife Message

Jan 22 2019
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Since his days as a small boy, Theodore Roosevelt, was captivated by the natural world, especially by the animals. He devoured books – an enthrallment that enhanced his entire life. His later sojourns and retreats to western Dakota Territory, while reveling in cowboy escapades and cattle operations, also provided feet-on-the-ground and eyes-to-the-sky opportunities with nature.

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Rank #2: Susan Fenton

Jan 23 2019
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It was on this date in 2000 that the North Dakota Museum of Art concluded an exhibition of pieces from artist/photographer Susan Fenton. Fenton was born January 11, 1949, in Philadelphia. In graduate school, she developed an artistic approach that involved photographing vignettes of toys and dolls and then painting the photos by hand. She went on to teach at multiple universities in the Pennsylvania area, but also worked internationally, teaching at St. Mary’s College in Rome and Temple

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Rank #3: The Seventh Cavalry

Jan 03 2019
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The Seventh Cavalry will forever be connected to North Dakota. Formed in 1866, the Seventh patrolled the Great Plains to protect westward expansion. Between 1866 and 1881, it is estimated that the regiment traveled some 181,692 miles across Dakota Territory and Montana.

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Rank #4: Treasure Map

Jan 25 2019
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Today’s story about a legend of lost treasure near the town of Kensal is twice as perplexing as it is puzzling. The tale involved gold dust, violence and a hand-drawn treasure map. It was on this date in 1927 that a United Press newspaper story, dateline “Kensal, N.D,” gave vague details about a fabulous treasure of “$100,000 in gold dust” that had been “hastily” buried long ago alongside the historic Fort Totten Trail.

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Rank #5: Sacred Medicine Bundle

Jan 24 2019
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An important aspect of Native American oral tradition involves sacred bundles of relics that help storytellers remember tribal stories and histories. According to newspaper reports from the 1930s, certain members of the Hidatsa’s Water Buster Clan were responsible for praying for rain and also for safeguarding a sacred medicine bundle that contained two ancient human skulls wrapped in a buffalo robe. The skulls represented two huge eagles that had turned into human beings – they were Thunder

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Rank #6: Lost on the Prairie

Nov 21 2018
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Early pioneers found the vast Great Plains a daunting sight. Accustomed to the forests and the cultivated lands of the east, the prairie stretched before them with nothing but tall grasses as far as the eye could see. Only an occasional river or small hill broke the sameness. Charles Dickens called it “the great blank” and said it was “oppressive in its monotony.” Rudyard Kipling wrote, “I see the grass shake in the sun for leagues on either hand. I see a river loop and run about a treeless land

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Rank #7: An Enthusiastic Explorer

Jan 02 2019
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People who wandered out to the Great Plains tended to be adventurous by nature. One of North Dakota’s lesser-known adventuring sons was Vilhjalumer Stefansson. Stefansson’s parents were from Iceland. They moved to Canada where he was born in 1879. From there the family relocated to North Dakota. Stefansson studied anthropology at the University of North Dakota. He went on to have a notable career.

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Rank #8: Jazz Comes to North Dakota

Jan 21 2019
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Canadian Eva Gauthier was one of the most prominent singers of the first half of the 20th century. In 1923, she made history when she included six jazz pieces in a concert of classical music at New York’s Aeolian Hall. The audience was stunned to have modern composers like George Gershwin listed on the same bill as Debussy, Stravinsky and Ravel. The mezzo-soprano’s accompanist was George Gershwin, and she’s largely given credit for launching his career that night. One month after that historic

Play Now

Rank #9: Isis Theatre Fire

Nov 19 2018
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Fires are unfortunately a part of every town in North Dakota. Fargo was devastated in 1893 by a downtown blaze, but in 1955 there was another memorable fire, one that destroyed the Isis Theatre and Hotel on this date in 1955.

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Rank #10: Proving Up

Nov 20 2018
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Abraham Lincoln signed the Homestead Act in 1862. This act opened up 270 million acres of land to homesteaders. Individuals who were 21 and the head of a household could claim 160 acres for a $12 fee. The person also had to be an American citizen or declare intention to become a citizen. Once the fee was paid, the person had to live on the land as a permanent residence and make improvements. These included building a home, planting trees, and growing crops or raising livestock. After five years,

Play Now

Rank #1: Theodore Roosevelt's Wildlife Message

Podcast cover
Read more

Since his days as a small boy, Theodore Roosevelt, was captivated by the natural world, especially by the animals. He devoured books – an enthrallment that enhanced his entire life. His later sojourns and retreats to western Dakota Territory, while reveling in cowboy escapades and cattle operations, also provided feet-on-the-ground and eyes-to-the-sky opportunities with nature.

Jan 22 2019
3 mins
Play Now

Rank #2: Susan Fenton

Podcast cover
Read more

It was on this date in 2000 that the North Dakota Museum of Art concluded an exhibition of pieces from artist/photographer Susan Fenton. Fenton was born January 11, 1949, in Philadelphia. In graduate school, she developed an artistic approach that involved photographing vignettes of toys and dolls and then painting the photos by hand. She went on to teach at multiple universities in the Pennsylvania area, but also worked internationally, teaching at St. Mary’s College in Rome and Temple

Jan 23 2019
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #3: The Seventh Cavalry

Podcast cover
Read more

The Seventh Cavalry will forever be connected to North Dakota. Formed in 1866, the Seventh patrolled the Great Plains to protect westward expansion. Between 1866 and 1881, it is estimated that the regiment traveled some 181,692 miles across Dakota Territory and Montana.

Jan 03 2019
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #4: Treasure Map

Podcast cover
Read more

Today’s story about a legend of lost treasure near the town of Kensal is twice as perplexing as it is puzzling. The tale involved gold dust, violence and a hand-drawn treasure map. It was on this date in 1927 that a United Press newspaper story, dateline “Kensal, N.D,” gave vague details about a fabulous treasure of “$100,000 in gold dust” that had been “hastily” buried long ago alongside the historic Fort Totten Trail.

Jan 25 2019
3 mins
Play Now

Rank #5: Sacred Medicine Bundle

Podcast cover
Read more

An important aspect of Native American oral tradition involves sacred bundles of relics that help storytellers remember tribal stories and histories. According to newspaper reports from the 1930s, certain members of the Hidatsa’s Water Buster Clan were responsible for praying for rain and also for safeguarding a sacred medicine bundle that contained two ancient human skulls wrapped in a buffalo robe. The skulls represented two huge eagles that had turned into human beings – they were Thunder

Jan 24 2019
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #6: Lost on the Prairie

Podcast cover
Read more

Early pioneers found the vast Great Plains a daunting sight. Accustomed to the forests and the cultivated lands of the east, the prairie stretched before them with nothing but tall grasses as far as the eye could see. Only an occasional river or small hill broke the sameness. Charles Dickens called it “the great blank” and said it was “oppressive in its monotony.” Rudyard Kipling wrote, “I see the grass shake in the sun for leagues on either hand. I see a river loop and run about a treeless land

Nov 21 2018
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #7: An Enthusiastic Explorer

Podcast cover
Read more

People who wandered out to the Great Plains tended to be adventurous by nature. One of North Dakota’s lesser-known adventuring sons was Vilhjalumer Stefansson. Stefansson’s parents were from Iceland. They moved to Canada where he was born in 1879. From there the family relocated to North Dakota. Stefansson studied anthropology at the University of North Dakota. He went on to have a notable career.

Jan 02 2019
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #8: Jazz Comes to North Dakota

Podcast cover
Read more

Canadian Eva Gauthier was one of the most prominent singers of the first half of the 20th century. In 1923, she made history when she included six jazz pieces in a concert of classical music at New York’s Aeolian Hall. The audience was stunned to have modern composers like George Gershwin listed on the same bill as Debussy, Stravinsky and Ravel. The mezzo-soprano’s accompanist was George Gershwin, and she’s largely given credit for launching his career that night. One month after that historic

Jan 21 2019
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #9: Isis Theatre Fire

Podcast cover
Read more

Fires are unfortunately a part of every town in North Dakota. Fargo was devastated in 1893 by a downtown blaze, but in 1955 there was another memorable fire, one that destroyed the Isis Theatre and Hotel on this date in 1955.

Nov 19 2018
2 mins
Play Now

Rank #10: Proving Up

Podcast cover
Read more

Abraham Lincoln signed the Homestead Act in 1862. This act opened up 270 million acres of land to homesteaders. Individuals who were 21 and the head of a household could claim 160 acres for a $12 fee. The person also had to be an American citizen or declare intention to become a citizen. Once the fee was paid, the person had to live on the land as a permanent residence and make improvements. These included building a home, planting trees, and growing crops or raising livestock. After five years,

Nov 20 2018
2 mins
Play Now