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Monuments, Memorials & Historic Sites

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 North Dakota World War I Memorials and Monumentsloupe

North Dakota World War I Monuments and Memorials Dedicated between 1918 and 1941

 North Dakotans  remembered those who served in World War I by erecting monuments and memorials all over the state.  The monuments and memorials range from bronze tablets which honored local men and women who served, to the Liberty Memorial Building (1925) on the State Capitol grounds in Bismarck, which is a memorial to all North Dakota World War I veterans. 

It appears that a monument erected in Minot on May 30, 1918 is the first permanent monument dedicated to local war dead in the United States.  This special  World War I monument, located in Minot’s Rosehill Cemetery, was erected by the Minot Girls Military Squad.  http://www.minotdailynews.com/news/local-news/2017/02/monumental-memorial/

Two bronze “doughboy” monuments are located in North Dakota.  One is located in the Riverview Cemetery, Williston and the other on the Richland County Court House Lawn in Wahpeton.    Both were erected in 1927.  Other organizations, such as the North Dakota War Mothers also dedicated monuments to their sons and daughters who had served in World War I.

North Dakotans also dedicated parks, such as the Lamoure County Memorial Park (1921), many community centers, and five county court houses as memorials. The five counties that built World War I memorial courthouses are Emmons (1934), Hettinger (1936), Renville (1936), Stark (1937) and Ward (1930).  The author has  worked with the State Historical Society of North Dakota to locate and research these monuments and memorials across the state.  As of  July 2017, over forty World War I monuments and memorials erected between 1918 and 1941 have been identified.  http://history.nd.gov/hp/WWImemorials.html  If you know of a monument or memorial constructed between these dates that is not on the attached list, please contact the State Historical Society of North Dakota at 701-328-2089.

Burke County World War Memorial Buildingloupe
101 1st St E
USA 58737

Flaxton World War I Memorial Hall

100 Cities / 100 Memorials

100c 100m wwi centennial plaque The Burke County World War I Memorial Building, known in the county as Flaxton Memorial Hall, was  It was constructed to honor and commemorate the Burke County veterans of World War I.  Built in 1931 in the Art Deco style, it was designed to accommodate all aspects of the rural existence: educational, recreational, civic, cultural, and political functions, and over the years has been utilized for athletic events, political events, social events, weddings, funerals, dramatic presentations, concerts, and movies that were shown on weekends. The Flaxton WWI Memorial Hall is one of only seven remaining buildings in North Dakota constructed as living memorials to the historic sacrifices of those who served in the greatest war the world had seen up to that date and to house government offices and community events. These World War I commemorative structures share the archetypal quality of strength and resolve portrayed by the architects and builders to reflect the public sentiment of reflection on the war, but only Flaxton’s Hall remains preserved, renovated but not remodeled, and continuously in service as a city government office and meeting center in the Northwest Quadrant of the state. 

Divide County World War Memorial Hallloupe
300 Main St.
USA 58765

The decision to build a memorial hall in Noonan (pop. 423) rather than the county seat of Crosby (pop. 1271) ended up being contested in ND Supreme Court Case Gehrke et al v Board of Commissioners of Divide County. The building was built with a full basement and main floor that included an auditorium with a balcony on the main floor. The lower level included a kitchen and lounge. The building is currently vacant.

Emmons County Memorial Courthouseloupe
100 4th St NW
USA 58552
J. Howard Hess

The Emmons County Courthouse was designed by J. Howard Hess of the architecture firm Bugenhagen, Hess, and Deeter and built by Olson and Orheim in 1934. It was the first project in North Dakota to be funded by the Public Works Administration and demonstrated how communities could benefit from the federal aid. There is a bronze plaque inside the lobby declaring it the "Emmons Memorial County Courthouse."

Girls Military Squad World War Monumentloupe
700 11th Ave SE
USA 58701

This white marble monument, erected by the Girls' Military Squad of Minot , is believed to be the first permanent memorial in the nation to recognize local soldiers who died during The Great War.

The memorial was dedicated on 30 May 1918, in Riverside Park, now Roosevelt Park. It was moved to Rosehill Cemetery due to flooding.  The date of the move is uncertain; cemetery and park officials are researching to locate that date, known to be before 1962, and welcome any information the public might have.

The base of the monument is inscribed on all four sides. On the north side is engraved, “Erected by the Girls Military Squad, Minot, ND, May 30, 1918.” Other inscriptions read, “All For Our Country,” “In Memory of Minot’s Heroes Who Have Sacrificed Their Lives In The World’s Great Struggle for Universal Democracy,” and “That Government of, by, and for the People Might Not Perish From the Earth.”

For an interesting article about this memorial, please see: http://roadstothegreatwar-ww1.blogspot.com/2021/12/americas-first-world-war-i-memorial.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email

Hankinson Memorial Monumentsloupe
1st Ave SW
USA 58041

These monuments mark the entrance to what is now the American Legion Baseball Field located on Highway 11 between 1st Ave SW and 2nd Ave SW. The ball diamond was developed through a federal work relief project in 1934. At this time, it is unknown if the markers were part of that project but as one marker is dated 1934, it is likely the monuments were erected at least in conjunction with the project. The plaques list the names of 211 men from Hankinson who served in World War I.

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Hansen Centerloupe
6000 College Lane
USA 58405

The Jamestown College Memorial Gymnasium was dedicated in 1923 and financed through general contributions and fundraising. This building housed the first indoor swimming pool in the state of North Dakota. It was renovated in 1993 and renamed the Hansen Center in honor of the major donor for the project. The building is still used for athletics but the Jimmie volleyball team played their last game there in 2016

Hettinger County Memorial Courthouseloupe
336 Pacific Ave
USA 58646
Ritterbush Brothers

The bond to build the Hettinger County Courthouse narrowly passed in 1934 after failing in several previous elections over two years. Part of the vote, this time, included taking advantage of Public Works Administration funds. The federal funds allowed the Ritterbush Brothers' Art Deco design to be built by A.J. Weinberger by 1936. The bottom floor has a room that was fitted for and to be maintained by the American Legion and Auxiliary for their use.

LaMoure County Memorial Parkloupe
9797 66th St SE
USA 58458

Memorial Park in LaMoure County was dedicated by county citizens to their fellow residents who served during WWI as soldiers and sailors. The entrance is marked by a stone gate, the center pillar of which is pictured at left. The park was dedicated in 1921 and also includes an auditorium with seating for 1440 persons. A newer memorial that is dedicated to the veterans of WWI, WWII, Korean and Vietnam is located next to the auditorium.

Liberty Memorial Buildingloupe
604 E Boulevard Ave
USA 58505

The oldest building on the Capitol Complex, the Liberty Memorial Building was constructed from 1920-1924 as offices for state agencies. The elegant use of multiple types of stone and bronze in the Neo-classical style has inspired photographers to shoot wedding, family, and senior photos there for many years. The Memorial Building now houses the State Library providing knowledge, history, and tradition all in the same place.

Memorial Building and Park loupe
104 Main St.
USA 58318

The original 1937 memorial building in Bottineau still stands at 411 Main St. but the building has been renovated for apartments and a new entry of different materials covers the original main entry. The free-standing monuments from the lawn were moved to the new Memorial Building and Park at 104 Main St. in 2011. The new memorial hall is open but improvements to the site that was the former State Bank of Bottineau continue. The new hall is dedicated to all veterans.

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Memorial Hallloupe
130 Main St E
USA 58351

Plans for Memorial Hall began in 1926. The funds were quickly raised in the community and through private donors so it could be constructed in 1927. The building originally had one large room upstairs for school activities and movies. The lower level had a large room used for dances, meetings, and public gatherings. In 1966, Ira Rush and Associates remodeled the interior and facade of the building for county offices. The building is now privately owned and vacant.

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Memorial Highwayloupe
500 W Front Ave
USA 58504
May 30, 1925

This granite marker on the original alignment of the Memorial Highway in Bismarck was sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary, Lloyd Spetz Unit No. 1 and dedicated on May 30, 1925. The Memorial Highway is a four-mile stretch from the intersection of Front St. and Washington St. in Bismarck west to the intersection of Main Ave. and Memorial Highway in Mandan. The four mile stretch is the area that was specifically named as a memorial for WWI.

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Memorial Stadiumloupe
2nd Ave N and Columbia Rd
Grand Forks
USA 58202
October 8, 1927

The Memorial Stadium on the University of North Dakota campus was designed by Walter H. Wheeler of Minneapolis and built in 1927 as a memorial to those from the UND community who died in World War I. The funds for this "fortress" were raised through student pledges, donations from alumni, businesses, and other friends of the university with a capacity to seat 10,634. Governor Sorlie spoke at the dedication on October 8, 1927 just before the homecoming game.

Mountrail County War Memorial Auditorium,loupe
18 2nd Ave SE
USA 58784
Edwin Molander

The Mountrail County War Memorial Auditorium was described in Buildings of North Dakota as being "one of the better designed and more successfully preserved World War I memorial buildings in North Dakota." The Art Deco building with decorative brickwork was designed by Edwin Molander and built in 1937. It currently houses a variety of offices including public offices, the local historical society, and the food pantry.


North Dakota WW1

Centennial Commission

Please send email inquiries to ndww1centennialcommittee@outlook.com

The mission of the North Dakota World War One Centennial Commission (NDWW1CC) is to raise awareness of and give meaning to the events of a hundred years ago, using educational experiences and programming for all ages. The Commission will use the Centennial as a timely and essential opportunity to educate the country’s citizens about the causes, courses, and consequences of the war in North Dakota; to honor the heroism and sacrifice of those Americans who served in our state; and to commemorate through public programs and initiatives the centennial of this global event.

NDWW1CC seeks the participation of academic institutions and faculty in the development of educational programming, broadcasting, print and digital media as it pertains to North Dakota. Appointments are given by the current North Dakota committee members.

Commission Officers


Darrell Dorgan


Susan Wefald


Shirley Olgeirson

Commission Members

Steve Andrist – North Dakota Newspaper Association

Claudia Berg – State historical Society of North Dakota

Dr. Al Berger – History Department, UND History Program

Dr. Carole Barrett – Historian/Author

Kevin Carvell – Historian/Author

Dr. John Cox – NDSU Historian/Author

Robert Greene – American Legion Historian

Calvin Grinnell – Native American Historian/Author

Larretta Hall – United Tribes, Bismarck

Mark Halvorson – State Historical Society of North Dakota 

Barbara Handy-Marcello – North Dakota Studies Historian, State Historical Society of North Dakota

Erik Holland – Curator of Education, State Historical Society of North Dakota

Neil Howe – North Dakota Studies Coordinator, State Historical Society of North Dakota

Dr. Gordon Iseminger – History Professor, UND

Tom Isern – NDSU Historian/Writer

Dr. Joseph Jastrzembski – History Program, Minot State University

Tracy Potter – Historian/Author

William Prokopyk – National Guard Historian

Dr. Joseph Stuart – University of Mary

Lauren Wiese GTA – NDSU Historian/Author

Joseph Zeleznik – NDSU Extension Forester

Gary Himmerich – ND AMVETS Commander

Orletta Klien – ND American Legion Commander

Carroll Quam – American Legion

William Tuff – ND VFW Commander

Julie Kuennen – North Dakota Governor’s Office

Mike Gayette – Website Manager

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