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Nehemiah G. OrdwaySeventh Territorial Governor

  • Residence: New Hampshire
  • Years Served: 1880-1884
  • Date of Inauguration: June 24, 1880
  • Age at Inauguration: 51
  • Politics: Republican
  • Born: Warner, New Hampshire - November 10, 1828
  • Died: Boston, Massachusetts - July 3, 1907

Political Background:

  • 1863, 1865, 1869, 1871: Sergeant at Arms, United States House of Representatives
  • 1875-1880: Several terms in New Hampshire Legislature
  • 1880-1884: Governor of Dakota Territory

Governor Ordway's administration was highlighted by tremendous growth in population, towns, counties, and railroads. From 1879 to 1884 the population more than doubled as Euro-American settlers rushed into Dakota Territory.

New Territorail Capitol- Bismarck
The new territorial capitol in Bismarck was under construction
by 1883. This building was a scaled back version of a more
stately plan. A south wing was added in 1893 and a north
addition was completed in 1903.

Ordway's administration was plagued by favoritism and corrupt practices. The territorial capitol was moved from Yankton to Bismarck during Ordway's terms of office.

In 1884 a grand jury indicted Ordway for corrupt practices in office. He was removed from office and President Chester A. Arthur appointed Chicago writer Gilbert A. Pierce the next Dakota Territory governor. Ordway became a special agent for the Northern Pacific Railroad, in charge of its Washington lobby.

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