North Dakota was the site of one of the deadliest storms in U.S. history, the Schoolhouse Blizzard of 1888. The storm struck without warning and claimed the lives of more than 200 people, many of whom were schoolchildren caught in the blizzard on their way home from school.
Ransom County, North Dakota, has a rich and storied history that dates back to the mid-19th century. The area was originally inhabited by the Dakota Sioux tribe, who relied on the rich natural resources of the region for their sustenance. However, European settlement began in the late 1800s, with the arrival of pioneers seeking fertile land for agriculture.

The county was officially established in 1873 and named in honor of General Thomas E.G. Ransom, a prominent Civil War veteran. The early settlers faced many challenges, including harsh weather conditions and the need to break the tough prairie sod to make the land suitable for farming. Despite these challenges, agriculture flourished, and grain farming became the key economic driver in Ransom County.

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Ransom County saw rapid growth and development. Towns such as Lisbon, the county seat, and Enderlin became important trading centers and transportation hubs. The arrival of the Northern Pacific Railroad in the 1880s further boosted the county's economy, enabling easier movement of goods and people.

Over the years, Ransom County has faced its share of challenges, including economic downturns and natural disasters. However, the resilient spirit of its residents and their commitment to agriculture have helped the county thrive. Today, Ransom County remains a primarily agricultural community, with diverse crop and livestock farming, and continues to be an integral part of North Dakota's rich agricultural heritage.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Ransom County, North Dakota.

  • 1871 - Ransom County is established by the Dakota Territory Legislature.
  • 1873 - Fort Ransom is established as a U.S. military post.
  • 1874 - The first permanent settlement, Lisbon, is founded.
  • 1882 - The Jamestown, Valley City and Northern Railroad is built, connecting the county to the national rail network.
  • 1910 - North Dakota Agricultural College (now North Dakota State University) establishes an experimental station in Lisbon.
  • 1914 - The Lisbon Opera House, a cultural and entertainment hub, is constructed.
  • 1930 - The Great Depression hits Ransom County, causing economic hardships for many residents.
  • 1951 - The Sheyenne Valley Electric Cooperative is formed, bringing electricity to rural areas of the county.
  • 1975 - The Ransom County Courthouse, built in 1883, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • 1997 - The Lisbon Bohnenkamp-Murphy House, a historic residential property, is added to the National Register of Historic Places.