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Unit 5: Set 5. Town Life in North Dakota - Holmboe Films

Introduction to Town Life

In 1916, North Dakota was still a rural state, but its towns were growing and modernizing. In these two films by Frithjof Holmboe, you can see automobiles sharing the dirt streets of Killdeer with horse drawn wagons. The blacksmith is still a busy man. Though merchant shops dominate the business district, cowboys trail cattle through town to the railroad yards where the cattle will be loaded onto cars for shipment to Chicago or other markets.

Holmboe, a Norwegian immigrant set up a photography shop in downtown Bismarck in 1909. He began making films in 1913 and produced tourism films for the state Department of Immigration. Holmboe left North Dakota for California in 1921.

Killdeer, ND and vicinity (click "Access this item.")

View of 4th Street and Main Avenue, Bismarck, N.D. (click "Access this item.")