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Edinburg, North Dakota
"The Kind Of Small Town Every Other Small Town Would Like To Be"
Location of Edinburg, North Dakota
Location of Edinburg, North Dakota
Country United States
State North Dakota
County Walsh
 • Total 0.32 sq mi (0.82 km2)
 • Land 0.32 sq mi (0.82 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
1,191 ft (363 m)
 • Total 196
 • Estimate 
 • Density 570.98/sq mi (220.43/km2)
Time zone UTC-6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-5 (CDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 701
FIPS code 38-22260
GNIS feature ID 1028809

Edinburg is a city in Walsh County, North Dakota, United States. The population was 196 at the 2010 census.


Edinburg is located at 48°29′43″N 97°51′51″W / 48.49528°N 97.86417°W / 48.49528; -97.86417 (48.495204, -97.864159).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.31 square miles (0.80 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 286
1910 300 4.9%
1920 278 −7.3%
1930 284 2.2%
1940 378 33.1%
1950 343 −9.3%
1960 330 −3.8%
1970 315 −4.5%
1980 300 −4.8%
1990 284 −5.3%
2000 252 −11.3%
2010 196 −22.2%
2019 (est.) 181 −7.7%
U.S. Decennial Census
2018 Estimate

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 196 people, 107 households, and 59 families residing in the city. The population density was 632.3 inhabitants per square mile (244.1/km2). There were 125 housing units at an average density of 403.2 per square mile (155.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 95.4% White, 0.5% Asian, 3.6% from other races, and 0.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.6% of the population.

There were 107 households, of which 16.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.5% were married couples living together, 3.7% had a female householder with no husband present, 0.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 44.9% were non-families. 43.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 24.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.83 and the average family size was 2.47.

The median age in the city was 55.7 years. 12.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 5.3% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 17.9% were from 25 to 44; 31.6% were from 45 to 64; and 33.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 46.9% male and 53.1% female.


1882 - 1894

The Cenntenial History

This is written from recollections of pioneer stories told, official records and preserved newspaper copies.

Coming to this section of Dakota Territory was a Norwegian by the name of Christian Buck. He is known as the "father" of old Edinburgh and the present city of Edinburg. He was acting in the official capacity of Receiver of the U.S. Land Office, and the first postmaster of Edinburgh, being appointed when the office was established on November 1, 1882. The name of the post office and settlement was chosen as a tribute to the university where Mr. Buck received his education.

Associated with Christian Buck was another pioneer by the name of Ove Oveson who operated the first store. The post office was also located in the store. At this time the mail had to be carried from the Dundee post office, six miles east of Edinburgh.

Charles Buck, half brother to Christian, had a small drug store and gave medical aid to the pioneers. A saloon was operated by 0. Travaaten and a blacksmith shop by 0. Runstad. The exact number of dwellings, at this old site, is uncertain but it is believed some were moved to the new town in 1888. There is one landmark in Edinburg that seems to be generally agreed to have been the office of Christ Buck which was moved in from the old site. That building now stands directly west of the Cenex Station. This building was remodeled and it is now the living room of the Mr. and Mrs. Ronald Monson home. It was the only building in the business area, besides one elevator, to stand after the disastrous fire of 1900.

In 1884 several mass meetings were held six miles south of town at the thriving settlement of Garfield to promote the construction of a railroad to serve the new settlements. Almost all surrounding townships were represented. Both the Edinburg and Garfield settlements were doomed to be disappointed for as an outcome of the conferences, the route of the new railroad was changed to by‑pass both communities.

As soon as the railroad lines were definitely established, Garfield was moved to Park River with the exception of the church and school. Edinburg retained its identity and just changed sites from section five to the East Half of the NEI/4 of Section 21, Lampton Township. The first eight blocks of the new townsite were platted on land owned by Daniel Shun.

On April 4, 1896, a petition was signed by Dr. A. A. Flaten and other qualified voters petitioning for incorporating the village of Edinburg. On May 11, 1896, the petition was presented to the Walsh County Commissioners and they referred it to the States Attorney. May 12, 1896, it was declared as an incorporated village; but it had to have the consent of all the qualified voters. It was advertised twice in the Park River Gazette. It was then voted upon. It was adopted June 2, 1896, as an incorporated village, with Christian Buck as Chairman; Dr. A.A. Flaten and J.E. Peterson, Trustees; and George Adams, Clerk. (This information was received from the Auditors Office in the Court House at Grafton ND.)

Many new business enterprises followed for the fast-growing town. Dr. A. A. Flaten purchased the drug store and began his practice of medicine. A creamery and elevator was built by O.H. Rustan. Later Edinburg was to boast of five grain elevators. There were two hotels (Waterman and North Western), two banks, a grocery store owned by John Drady, a general (Mpls.) store opened by J.E. White, a meat market owned by Ben Shuley, and a hardware store owned by Buck and Adams. Nate Knudson had a tin shop, Hans Wick a blacksmith shop and the Melstad Brothers had a general store. Field's Store was also a general merchandise store. The first depot was operated from a boxcar. Grant's Livery Stable was also a thriving business.

The flour mill was built in 1898 by Peder P. Lee. Farmers had to come from Edmore to market their wheat. At that time, very few farmers had horses so had to use oxen. The E & M corner of today was where Hans Anderson had a line of machinery with Robertson Lumber Co. to the north.

The first jewelry store was built by Oscar Mandt. The second saloon was operated by Knut Evenson. Peter Lee was in the restaurant business and Gilbertson had a pool hall. Peder P. Lee built the first furniture store and in 1894 sold it to Ole Brevik. An implement shop was located where Anderson Sales has their building now. A. C. Jensen in the hardware store with Jack Oliver, tinsmith, completes the list of early Edinburg business enterprises.


About the time the young town was developed, it was hit by the biggest disaster in its history. On April 20, 1900, the entire business section of the town was swept away by a tremendous fire that, in the course of but two hours, consumed every business structure in the village with the exception of Christ Buck's little office building, one elevator and the mill.

At the time of the fire, which started at the rear of the Flaten Drug, a strong south wind was blowing spreading and fanning the flames so fast that people had all they could do to vacate the buildings so that very little was saved. Mrs. Julius Bjornson and Mrs. Jacob Lindal, who lived in an apartment over Field's Store (where the bank now stands), perished in the fire. Many homes were also destroyed in the fire. People moved into the Methodist Church (now located in the city park) until their homes could be rebuilt.

A large cistern at the corner between the present site of the Edinburg Superette and the vacant lot south of the new fire hall (where the hotel was located) was supposed to serve as fire protection. It was inaccessible because of the rapid spread of the fire.

The economic loss was enormous. Yet, even before the ruins had ceased smoking, mass meetings were called, the situation discussed and a decision reached to rebuild the town. In a year's time almost every business place was rebuilt and Edinburg emerged from its supreme test in a more up-to-date shape, with bigger and better structures and a better street system than they had ever hoped for.

Cordelia's Store, built by Mr. Barsness, was one of the first buildings to be erected after the fire. This was rented by Anton Swensrud for a confectionery store and bowling alley. Some of the other businesses built after the fire were: the Merchant's Hotel; N.H. Johnston, Confectionery and Restaurant; McEwan, Dougherty & Shuley, farm machinery and hardware; Duncan & Leslie; Edinburg Roller Mills; W.H. Murphy, Livery - Feed & Stables; John H. Sundvor, General Merchandise Store; J.I. Coffey, Clothing Store; J. Thomasson, Edinburg Meat Market; Skjold and Goodman, Ladies Clothing Store; Dr. David Bell, Physician and Surgeon (his office was over the State Bank Building); The State Bank of Edinburg; and The Merchants Bank of Edinburg.

Death of Christian Buck

About 1910 Christian Buck was living at the hotel. One day a stranger came to the hotel. This man was insane and as Buck came out of his upstairs room, the man shot and killed him. The Founder of the town, Christian Buck was an honest, helpful man who was loved by everyone who lived in Edinburg. He is buried in the southwest corner of the Edinburg Cemetery.

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