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Press Release - North Dakota Properties Listed in National Register of Historic Places

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 27, 2013
Contact: Lorna Meidinger

North Dakota Properties Listed in National Register of Historic Places

BISMARCK – An auditorium, church, and historic site in North Dakota have recently been listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The National Register of Historic Places is the federal government’s list of properties it considers worthy of preservation and recognition.

Edinburg WPA Auditorium was built by the Works Progress Administration in 1938 as an auditorium with style elements from Art Deco and Art Moderne. The auditorium hosted many community events, all local basketball games, and many other school functions until the 1970s. The building was then only used on occasion until the local hardware store moved in after its own building burned in 1993.

Construction of Vikur Lutheran Church in Mountain began in 1884 on land donated by the first pastor, (Séra) Páll Thorláksson. Thorláksson played a major role in the establishment of the Icelandic-American community and the creation of the Icelandic Evangelical Lutheran Synod. Vikur Lutheran is recognized as the first and oldest Icelandic church in the United States.

White Stone Hill near Kulm in Dickey County was the site of conflict between General Sully’s soldiers and a buffalo hunting camp of Dakota in early September 1863. The nomination includes the core area from this nationally significant conflict. The nomination also includes the stone buildings and structures built by the Works Progress Administration and the monuments that are part of Whitestone Hill State Historic Site at the level of statewide significance.

Contrary to some misconceptions about the National Register program, listing in it does not prevent owners from altering their property, restricting the use or sale of the property, or establishing times requiring that the property must be open to the public. Entry into the National Register of Historic Places does give a property prestige, provides protection from federally-assisted projects, and provides eligibility for certain preservation financial incentives.

For more information about the National Register program in North Dakota, contact Architectural Historian Lorna Meidinger, State Historical Society of North Dakota, at 701.328.2089 or find information online at

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