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Chateau de Mores - History

The Chateau de Mores State Historic Site interprets the life of the Marquis de Mores. A French aristocrat with an entrepreneurial spirit common during this era, the Marquis came to Dakota Territory in 1883 to find fortune in the cattle industry. He planned to slaughter range cattle at Medora, ship dressed meat east in refrigerated rail cars, and provide urban consumers with a better quality meat product.Marquis on horseback

The Marquis invested heavily in his dream. He built a meat-packing plant, bought cattle and land, and employed cowboys and workers. For three years Medora hummed with activity; the de Mores family built houses, businesses, and a Catholic church. The Marquis’s many enterprises included cattle ranches, sheep ranches, and the Medora-Deadwood Stagecoach line.

When the Marquis’s meat-packing scheme collapsed in 1886, his commercial empire did as well. His dreams, however, created a romantic legacy that lives on in western North Dakota.

Still standing in the town he named for his wife is the home he built for his in-laws, the wealthy von Hoffmans from New York, and a Catholic church his wife had constructed. De Mores Memorial Park and a statue of the Marquis also recall the de Mores presence. The meat-packing plant burned in 1907; its brick chimney still stands east of the Little Missouri River at what is now Chimney Park.

New Lesson Plan & Education Materials Available

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Address:
1/8 miles W and 1/8 miles S of
Medora Chimney Park -
west edge of Medora
De Mores Memorial Park -
downtown Medora, ND 58654
Get Directions

Hours:
Winter hours start September 16, 9 am - 5 pm (MDT) Tuesday - Saturday.
Winter rates are ½ price which includes interpretive center galleries;
if a tour of the house is arranged admission is full price.

Contact Chateau de Mores:
phone: (701) 623-4355
fax: (701) 623-4921

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