These Rare Photos Of The Pioneer Days In North Dakota Will Open Your Eyes To A Different Time

We’ve explored much of North Dakota in the 1900s, from the 30s to the 70s, through old photographs here so far. And we’ve even gone back a little further than that a few times. But now, we’re going to go back into some of the state’s earliest days – before it even was a state. Back in the 1850s and up until the 1890s, North Dakota was a vast land that was seen in the eyes of the settlers as a “wonderland” for farming and life. It wasn’t even North Dakota yet, as it was still connected to South Dakota as the single, large Dakota Territory.

Photography wasn’t quite as widespread then, so photographs of it are scarce, but we have compiled some of these rare photos showcasing what life was like then. You’ll notice a lot of them are double images side-by-side. These were “stereoscopic” to be viewed with a stereoscope, in order to see them with a 3D effect. You won’t get that here, but because of these popular images back in the day, many were able to be saved and preserved so we may view them here.

We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:

Check out some of the other parts of history viewed through photographs that we’ve covered:

The 1950s, 60s, and 70s.

From the Great Depression

During the turmoils of WWII