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Chateau de Mores - History

By Appointment Only

We are currently open by appointment only. Please call us at 701.623.4355.

Know Before You Go

To allow for proper social distancing, sites will operate at reduced capacity. Touchable exhibit components will remain closed, and site tours may be limited for visitor and staff safety. The agency would also like to remind visitors to follow the CDC's recommendations on social distancing and personal hygiene while visiting state historic sites. See our guidelines for visiting.

The Marquis and MedoraThe Marquis’ most striking legacy is the rustic but aristocratic 26-room home that his neighbors dubbed "the chateau." Overlooking his town and enterprises, the frame home was ready for Medora Von Hoffman's arrival in spring 1884. Rich furnishings, oriental carpets, and fine accoutrements accommodated the family and their wealthy guests, including Theodore Roosevelt. The couple’s two children, Athenais, and Louis, as well as nurses, maids, and other domestic help, accompanied them to Medora. For three years, the family occupied the home seasonally, returning to New York during the winters. Among their pastimes were hunting, music, and art, common diversions of nineteenth-century aristocrats. Both Medora and the Marquis were skilled hunters.

Packing Plant, Medora NDThe ruins of the Marquis’s meat-packing plant, situated on the west edge of Medora, are called Chimney Park. The packing plant was part of the Marquis’s most ambitious project: to supply high-quality meat to the nations consumers quickly and economically by processing it locally and shipping it to market. With the help of his father-in-law, Baron Von Hoffman, the Marquis incorporated the Northern Pacific Refrigerator Car Company in April 1883. Although the plant could process 150 beef carcasses per day, finding cattle that were fit to butcher was difficult, due to the ongoing drought in the badlands. The plant closed in November 1886, a failure due to fierce competition from major Chicago-based packers, the effects of bad weather and drought, and the Marquis’s inexperience in business.

When the Marquis left Medora in 1886, the plant was abandoned. The building burned in 1907. A tall, native-brick chimney still stands in silent tribute to this early attempt to capitalize on the meat-packing business.

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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
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The Interpretive Center is currently open by appointment only.

The Chateau is open May-October, weather permitting. Please call to verify.

Chimney Park and DeMores Memorial Park open year round.

Contact Chateau de Mores:
phone: 701.623.4355
fax: 701.623.4921

Contact SHSND:
phone: 701.328.2666
fax: 701.328.3710
email: history@nd.gov