History of Kensal North Dakota                                                           Schools  Banks

I need a lot of help here. I haven't looked very hard yet. Chis Mack is a history teacher and will work on this with us.

I have a Kensal commemorative Buckle that is dated 1885. On the back is printed:
Anton & Julius Fredericson Homes
    First Bldgs.                 1887
    Soo Line R.R              1892
    First Elevator               1892 
    Kensal First House      1893
    Post Office                  1893
    First School                 1894
    First Tow Mill              1895
    City Incorporated         1908
    Fire Dept                     1908  

Around 1900

North Dakota Names and Places, Douglas A. Wick. The Soo line RR station was founded in 1892 in Sec 12-144-64, Kensal Twp., and named by local settlers for their former home of Kensale, county Cork Ireland, although some say it was named for an early surveyor in Stutsman County. The post office was established August 16, 1893 with George F. Armstrong of the nearby Arrow wood post office taking over the new facility. John Putman and C.J. Croonquist opened the first stores, and the village was incorporated in 1907 

 Postcard History Series, Main Street ND Geneva Roth Olstad.Arcaidia Publishing
Available from the publisher online at www.arcadiapublishing.com or by calling 888-313-2665.  E-Mail sales@arcadiapublishing.com
Looking East about 1950

   Kensal is located in the northeastern part of Stutsman County on the main line of the Soo Line railway which arrived in the fall of 1892. Kensal is located on highway 9 north of Jamestown. It is  approximately 18 miles southwest of Glenfield, 13 miles northwest of Courtenay, 12 miles south of Jaunita, 15 miles east of Melville, and 12 miles northeast of Edmunds. The original town site was laid out by the Minnesota Loan and Trust Company, and included one quarter section of land. The northwest 40 was purchased from Anton Fredrickson and the northeast quarter from his brother Julius. The rest of it from the Metcalf Land Company.  In general terms the site extended from just west of E.W. Strohs dwelling to the row of willows east of the C.J. Croonquist's home (today this would be between Messmer's house and  Lillian Wolsk's house) and from a point just north of the Albert Hanson's residence (later the Berg or Garfield Johnson residence) to a line on the lot north of the Anton Feckler house (today the house is owned by the Catholic parish).
   John Putnam was the first pioneer merchant, followed in 1893 by C. J. Croonquist, who opened with a line of general merchandise. In the winter of 1892, Dan Clancy opened the first restaurant, which was sold the next year to Thomas Nihil. In 1901, Gustav Gunther established a butcher shop. After the railroad went through, seven elevators were erected. Some of the early settlers were T. R. Clems, barber; E. M. Tucker in hardware; C. W. McDonald. first telegraph operator: Grant Partlow. W. S. Tufford. Glenn Faar. Jacob Peterson. T. M. Hjorth. F. W. Bartz. and Frank Smith. The first Kensal House was built in 1883 and stood until the winter of 1978-79 when it was razed. In its place an eight unit apartment was built for the elderly and is fully occupied.
   A bank was established in 1903 with A. G. Randall as the cashier. The newspaper edited at that time was the North Dakota State Journal with William Dudley as editor and publisher. A small school was built in 1894, followed by a larger one in 1903. The present building was built in 1961, followed by a gymnasium in 1975.
   The Methodist Episcopal Church was dedicated in 1900. Catholics bought the old school as a place of worship in 1903, while the Lutherans rented the Congregational Church in 1914.
   In 1907, a commercial club was organized. Kensal was incorporated as a village in 1908. The first officers were Jacob Peterson, Anton Feckler, Albert Hanson, O. M. Wilkenson, Glenn Farrar, Ben Jones, L. C. Lane and T. J. Walsh. A three acre plot of land was donated for a cemetery by Andrew Holm and was controlled by the Kensal Cemetery Association.
   Postmaster Thompson built the tow mill in 1895. It burned down in 1945. Haakon Ekren rebuilt it in 1946. The two businesses were discontinued shortly thereafter. In 1983, the building was used for grain storage. It has since been removed.