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Monuments, Memorials & Historic Sites

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 North Dakota World War I Memorials and Monumentszoom

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.

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.  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 Buildingzoom
103 1st St E

C.A. Pear designed this building and it was constructed by W.M. Nordmann in 1931. The building cost $25,000 and was built using a county mill levy and funds from the City of Flaxton. It is also known now as the Flaxton Memorial Hall. The building was designed with an auditorium, stage, dressing rooms, meeting rooms, bathrooms, a kitchen and dining room, and even a two-cell jail. Today it still serves the community as a center for gatherings and meetings.

Divide County World War Memorial Hallzoom
300 Main St.

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. In 2017, the building is vacant in a town of an estimated 130 people.

Emmons County Memorial Courthousezoom
100 4th St NW
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 Monumentzoom
700 11th Ave SE
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The Girls Military Squad began planning the monument with the first deaths of Ward County men (11 had died by May 23, 1918) and erected it on May 30, 1918 for "Minot's Heroes Who Have Sacrificed Their Lives In The Worlds' Great Struggle for Universal Democracy That Government of, by, and for the People Might Not Perish From the Earth". This monument appears to be the first monument for local dead from World War I in the nation as most communities waited until the war was over before erecting memorials. Located in Rose Hill Cemetery.

Hankinson Memorial Monumentszoom
1st Ave SW

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 Centerzoom
6000 College Lane

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 Courthousezoom
336 Pacific Ave
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 Parkzoom
9797 66th St SE

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 Buildingzoom
604 E Boulevard Ave

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 zoom
104 Main St.

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 Hallzoom
130 Main St E

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 Highwayzoom
500 W Front Ave
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 Stadiumzoom
2nd Ave N and Columbia Rd
Grand Forks
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,zoom
18 2nd Ave SE
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

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

Doughboy MIA


The Doughboy MIA Mission:

“To commemorate for all time the U.S. Missing in Action of the Great War; to assemble and make public the most complete and accurate accounting of the U.S. Missing in Action of the Great War; to attempt to gather back ground information and photographs of all of the U.S. Missing in Action of the Great War; to attempt when and where possible to locate and identify the final resting place of the U.S. Missing in Action of the Great War and to petition those, when appropriate, for the ways and means necessary to recognize and officially identify recovered U.S. Missing in Action remains or grave locations from the Great War, or to otherwise commemorate discovered or identified U.S. Missing in Action of the Great War.”

Help Us Find Them

Doughboy MIA is an ongoing program of the United States Foundation for the Commemoration of the World Wars. A volunteer team, including both American and European members, has performed extensive research in a variety of archives and resources to assemble more accurate and refined lists of Americans missing during the war. Doughboy MIA research has already eliminated duplicate names, and identified known individual service members who have been left off of memorials or otherwise not acknowledged. Doughboy MIA researchers have also analyzed possible battlefield recovery cases that could be pursued if resources were available. Your donation to the Foundation to support Doughboy MIA will help this work continue and expand.

Show the missing Doughboys that you have not forgotten

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"Pershing" Donors

$5 Million +

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