The first stops in North Dakota on our 4250-mile road trip up the Missouri River and back were the tiny towns of Hague and Strasburg, not because the latter was the hometown of Lawrence Welk (another German via Odessa), but because it contained one of several cemeteries in Emmons County that contained distinctive wrought-iron crosses, whose National Register of Historic Places listing in Wikipedia had no photos. The crosses were made by German-Russian blacksmiths in central North Dakota who developed individual styles and whose work was known for miles around.
Our next stop was in Bismarck at the North Dakota Heritage Center and State Museum, which had a special exhibit on Native American storytellers in addition to its many exhibits on natural history, including lots of dinosaurs whose fossils are abundant in the Dakotas.
On our way to Minot the next day, we stopped to photograph (for Wikipedia) historic (1885) Ingersoll School in Underwood and later to view the Garrison Dam and Lake Sakakawea, the largest water storage reservoir in the U.S. (Lake Oahe in SD is the second largest.) In Minot, where Ms. Outlier spent her college years, we visited the attractive Scandinavian Heritage Center.
The next day we drove US2 west to Williston, stopping at Stanley and Ross in Mountrail County to photograph two NRHP sites for Wikipedia: the (1937) Great Northern Railway Underpass (very helpful when long freight trains are passing) and the unexpected (1929) Assyrian Muslim Cemetery. The Great Northern Railway (now merged into BNSF) was extended from Minot as far as Tioga, ND, in 1887, thanks primarily to Japanese immigrant labor. (US2 follows the railroad.) It brought many immigrant settlers onto the northern plains and carried enormous quantities of grain out. In 1951, Amerada Petroleum Corporation (now Hess Corp) discovered oil near Tioga and the resulting oil boom has made Mountrail and Williams counties the richest in North Dakota. Nearly every large farm has an oil well on it.
That afternoon, we took ND1804 (named for the year Lewis and Clark went upriver) to Fort Buford Historical Site at the confluence of the Yellowstone and Missouri Rivers, then drove farther to Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site right at the state line. (The parking lot is in Montana.) For dinner, we enjoyed big servings of northern pike at the Williston Brewing Company in the old but renovated El Rancho Hotel.
On our way back to Bismarck the next day, we drove through the north unit of Theodore Roosevelt National Park, with lovely vistas of the North Dakota Badlands, the Little Missouri River, and herds of bison. After a long drive on I-94, we had fish again for dinner that night with one of Ms. Outlier's old school friends, and lunch with another on our way south on US83 the next day.
Halibut en papillote