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STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF NORTH DAKOTA
[Authorized: NDCC Chapter 55-01]

A State Historical Commission and authorization for a state historical society were established in 1895. In 1905, the Legislative Assembly provided an appropriation and facilities in the Capitol and named the Society trustee for the state. The Society remained a quasi-public institution until 1965, when legislative action created the State Historical Board as the governing body of the agency. In 1967, the private membership organization was severed from official connection with the state agency.  ln 1987, the Legislative Assembly authorized the State Historical Society of North Dakota to create a new membership adjunct without voice in governance of the agency.

The society is under the supervision of the 12-member State Historical Board.  Seven members of the board are appointed by the Governor for three-year terms. The remaining members are ex officio: the Commissioner of Commerce, Director of the Department of Transportation, Secretary of State, Director of Parks and Recreation Department, and State Treasurer. From among the appointed members, the Board elects a president, vice president, and secretary. The board appoints the Director of the State Historical Society of North Dakota to administer the agency and carry out policies and directives. The agency is organized into six divisions:

Administration is headed by the Assistant Director and is responsible for overall agency support, budgeting and fiscal matters, personnel management, and security.

The Archaeology and Historic Preservation Division protects and manages cultural resources by identifying and recording sites related to North Dakota's prehistory; surveying, identifying and recording structures and sites eligible for listing on the North Dakota Historic Sites Registry; and nominating structures and sites for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.  The Director of the State Historical Society of North Dakota serves as the state historic preservation officer.  The Director of the Archaeology and Historic Preservation Division is Deputy Historic Preservation Officer. The Division preserves and manages 55 state-owned historic sites ranging in size from nearly 200 acres (Fort Clark State Historic Site) to markers occupying less than a tenth of an acre.

The Museum Division collects and manages artifact collections representative of North Dakota history and culture; designs and mounts interpretive exhibits at the North Dakota Heritage Center and ten branch museums, and oversees a traveling exhibit program. The museum (and agency) is fully accredited by the American Association of Museums. 

The Communications and Education Division: produces public and educational programs and events for adults and children at the North Dakota Heritage Center and other locations; provides liaison services to North Dakota's 140 county and local historical societies;  produces publications including a quarterly journal, North Dakota History, and a quarterly newsletter, Plains Talk;  coordinates visitor services for the Heritage Center.

Historic sites: preserves and manages 55 state-owned historic sites representative of North Dakota history and culture.  These sites range in size from nearly 200 acres (Fort Clark State Historic Site) to markers occupying less than one-tenth acre. 

The State Archives Division collects, manages and references documentary resources relating to state history and culture.  The Division is the official state archives, preserving North Dakota government records of enduring value. Its extensive collections also include the state’s official newspapers, books, photographs, maps, manuscript collections and audiovisual materials. The Director of the Division serves as North Dakota State Archivist.

State Historical Society of North Dakota activities are headquartered in the North Dakota Heritage Center on the Capitol grounds. 

Record Series
30203 Superintendent's Correspondence
30204 Historic Sites and State Park Monthly Reports
30205 Curator's Correspondence
30206 Board of Directors' Correspondence
30207 Administrative Memoranda
30209 Correspondence re: WPA Projects Sponsored by the State Historical Society
30211 Budget Files
30212 Audit Reports
30213 Secretary's Files
30214 International Peace Garden Files
30215 Natural Resource Council Files
30216 State Outdoor Recreation Agency Council Files
30217 Fort Abraham Lincoln Files
30218 Custer-Fort Abraham Lincoln Foundation Reports
30237 State Parks. Fort Abercrombie Records
30238 State Parks. Civilian Conservation Corps Camps - Fargo Metropolitan State Park
30239 State Parks. Civilian Conservation Corps Camps - Bismarck Metropolitan Parks
30240 State Parks, Civilian Conservation Corps Camps - South Roosevelt Regional State Park
30241 State Parks. Civilian Conservation Corps Camps - International Peace Garden State Park
30253 State Parks. North Roosevelt and Fort Abraham Lincoln Parks Albums
30254 State Parks. State Park Construction Projects
30258 State Parks. Theodore Roosevelt State Park
30529 Historical Data Project. Pioneer Biographies
30548 Historical Data Project. Local Histories
30549 Historical Data Project. Transcripts of Local Government Records
30550 North Dakota Writers' Project. County History Files
30551 North Dakota Writers' Project. City History Files
30552 North Dakota Writers' Project. North Dakota Guide Files
30553 North Dakota Writers' Project. Place Name Survey Data
30554 North Dakota Writers' Project. Place Name Survey Forms
30555 North Dakota Writers' Project. Old Post Office and Ghost Towns Files
30556 North Dakota Writers' Project. Geographical Place Names Files
30557 North Dakota Writers' Project. Points of Interest Files
30558 North Dakota Writers' Project. Hard Wheat Study Files
30559 North Dakota Writers' Project. Ethnic Group Files
30560 North Dakota Writers' Project. History of Grazing Files
30561 North Dakota Writers' Project. "America Eats" Files
30562 North Dakota Writers' Project. Folklore Files
30563 North Dakota Writers' Project. State Director's Correspondence
30564 North Dakota Writers' Project. Personnel Files
30565 North Dakota Writers' Project. General Correspondence
30566 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. State Survey Files
30567 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Manuscript Survey Files
30568 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Local Government Records Survey
30569 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Transcripts of County Commission Proceedings
30570 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Naturalization Index
30573 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Map and Photo Survey Files
30574 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Church Survey Files
30575 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Church Index
30576 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Civilian Defense Survey
30577 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Social and Fraternal Organization Index
30578 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Newspaper Survey
30579 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. North Dakota Imprints
30580 North Dakota Historical Records Survey. Administrative Files
30785 State Archives. Biographies and Portraits of Prominent Citizens of the State
30786 State Archives. Record of Pioneers on or Before 1889
31532 State Archives. Division Files
32140 Historic Sites. Maps, Blueprints, Specifications
32141 Education and Interpretation, Events Photography
32142 Historic Preservation. Planner Files
32179 Education and Interpretation, Events and Programs
32286 Historic Sites, Fort Totten Photographs
32294 Museum Division Curator Files, Norman Paulson
32314 Historic Sites. Missile Site Oral Histories
32333 Archeology and Historic Preservation, Audiovisual Material

Address:
612 East Boulevard Ave.
Bismarck, North Dakota 58505
Get Directions

Hours:
Museum Store: 8am - 5pm M-F; Sat. & Sun. 10am - 5pm.
State Archives: 8am - 4:30pm., M-F, except state holidays, and 2nd Sat. of each month, 10am - 4:30 pm.
State Historical Society offices: 8am - 5pm M-F, except state holidays.

Contact Us:
phone: (701) 328-2666
fax: (701) 328-3710
email: histsoc@nd.gov