World War I Centennial commemoration events scheduled across North Dakota

The centennial of the end of World War I is approaching and events across North Dakota are being planned.

“We originated the idea of having bells toll and sirens ring on the morning of Nov. 11 at 11 a.m. across the nation and state,” said Darrell Dorgan, Bismarck, World War I North Dakota Centennial chairman.

He said the National World War I Centennial Commission is asking all states to participate.

“We are asking communities across North Dakota to be involved in this tribute…. Details on the event will be released shortly,” Dorgan said.

North Dakota World War I committee members have also formally requested that county veterans services officers and local veterans organizations read the names of the more than 1,300 North Dakotans who died in World War I. The committee has requested the names be read aloud from the steps of the county courthouse or a place of public gathering when the bells are done tolling.

Groups that have events planned to commemorate World War I are also asked to contact the World War I Centennial Commission so the events can be listed on the website Event information should be emailed to Mike Gayette at

A list of those who died during the war will be listed by county and city on the website in mid-September.

Through support from the North Dakota Humanities Council a series of community events leading up to the celebration of the armistice that ended World War I will be held throughout North Dakota. Lectures and community discussions will be held in six cities during October and the first week of November. Susan Wefald or Darrell Dorgan will moderate each of the events. The programs will begin with a 10-minute video overview of World War I, followed by a 20- to 30-minute talk on the war and North Dakota’s participation in it. Audience members will be allowed to ask questions at the end of the presentations.

In conjunction with these celebrations, Prairie Public Radio will be airing special World War I related stories and programming in the days leading up to and on Nov. 11.

“We look forward to working with groups to help publicize the events of 100 years ago and to remember the ultimate sacrifice made by millions across the world and thousands of others from North Dakota,” Dorgan said.

World War I talks throughout the state

All events begin at 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 16 — Williston Community Library. Talk by Joseph Jastrzembski, Minot State University professor.

Oct. 17 — Minot Public Library. Talk by Joseph Jastrzembski, Minot State University professor.

Oct. 23 — Grand Forks Public Library. Talk by Al Berger, University of North Dakota professor.

Oct. 24 — Fargo Public Library. Talk by Tom Isern, North Dakota State University professor.

Oct. 30 — Old Stutsman County Courthouse, Jamestown. Talk by Carole Barrett, University of Mary professor.

Nov. 7 — North Dakota Heritage Center, Bismarck. Talk by Barbara Handy-Marcello, State Historical Society of North Dakota.