North Dakota

  • Population- 635,900
  • Capital- Bismarck
  • Largest cities– Fargo, Bismarck, Grand Forks
  • Time zone- Central, Mountain
  • Date of Admission to the Union- November 2, 1889
  • Slogan- “Liberty and union now and forever one and inseparable”
  • State website URL-

North Dakota remains one of the least populated states in the Union and largely agricultural. The Red River Valley is the name given to a large tract of very viable land in the state that makes it useable for agriculture. In fact it’s likely that had fertile territory such as the valley not been available that critical metro centers like Fargo and Grand Rapids may not have been founded. The edge of the Red River actually demarcates the boundary between North Dakota and Minnesota. This north-flowing river empties into Manitoba, Canada. Large-scale farming of sunflowers, sugar beets, soybeans and other grains comprise some of the biggest harvests in the nation.

Low-grade coal, known as lignite, is mined widely in western North Dakota. This resource is a staple of the economy and is most commonly used as a cheap fuel source. The other significant resource extracted from North Dakota territory is oil. The Williston Basin has served as a geologically rich source for crude oil. The small city of Tioga is the self-proclaimed “Oil capital of North Dakota.”

The Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site is located in Williston. The site is maintained, as it most likely once was, a frontier trading post that is significant in that it was a critical economic link between Indian tribes and American settlers. The primary goods exchanged include buffalo hides, assorted animal furs, and weapons. The site is popular for history buffs and Old West enthusiasts.

Most state capitals follow a characteristic dome shape, but North Dakota’s is a modern-looking high-rise. The original capital was burned beyond repair and this erected in its place. The exterior is constructed of regionally quarried limestone.

The Garrison Dam is a major hydroelectric generating plant that was built in the aftermath of the Great Depression. The Garrison Dam National Fish Hatchery farms the leading supply of walleye and pike.