|ND State Facts|
|Territory: Mar 2, 1861|
|Statehood: Nov 2, 1889|
|Borders: MN, MT, SD and Can|
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Today’s North Dakota counties did not always exist in the present form. They went through many different changes in the space of a few short years.
North Dakota Territorial Counties
Land was received from Idaho Territory on May 28, 1864. The Wyoming Territory split off on July 25, 1868.
The State of North Dakota entered the union as the 39th state on November 2, 1889.
North Dakota Counties Today
Fun Facts about North Dakota Counties
Counties by Year
- Pembina County was the first county created in 1867.
- Grant County was the last county created in 1916.
County Size Facts
- McKenzie County (2,742 sq mi) is the largest county in North Dakota.
- Eddy County (632 sq mi) is the smallest county in North Dakota.
County Population Facts
- Slope County (727) is the least populated county in North Dakota.
- Cass County (149,778) is the most populated county in North Dakota.
North Dakota City Facts
North Dakota’s 10 largest cities (2018 est.) are:
- Fargo (124,844) is in Cass County
- Bismarck (73,112) is in Burleigh County
- Grand Forks (56,948) is in Grand Forks County
- Minot (47,370) is in Ward County
- West Fargo (36,566) is in Cass County
- Williston (27,096) is in Williams County
- Dickinson (22,739) is in Stark County
- Mandan (22,519) is in Morton County
- Jamestown (15,226) is in Stutsman County
- Wahpeton (7,753) is in Richland County
Boundary Changes of North Dakota Counties from 1812-1916
This Interactive Map of North Dakota Counties show the historical boundaries, names, organization, and attachments of every county, extinct county and unsuccessful county proposal from 1812 to 1916.
List of North Dakota Counties
|County||Date Formed (Organized)||Parent County||County Seat|
|Barnes||1875||Cass County||Valley City|
|Billings||1879 (1886)||Dakota Territory||Medora|
|Bottineau||1873 (1884)||Dakota Territory||Bottineau|
|Bowman||1883 (1907)||Billings County||Bowman|
|Cavalier||1874 (1884)||Pembina County||Langdon|
|Dickey||1881||La Moure County||Ellendale|
|Dunn||1901 (1908)||Starner and Mercer Counties||Manning|
|Eddy||1885||Foster County||New Rockford|
|Emmons||1879||Burleigh County and Campbell County, SD||Linton|
|Foster||1873 (1883)||Pembina County||Carrington|
|Golden Valley||1912||Billings County||Beach|
|Grand Forks||1873 (1875)||Pembina County||Grand Forks|
|Griggs||1881||Foster, Burbank and Traill Counties||Cooperstown|
|Hettinger||1901 (1907)||Stark County||Mott|
|Kidder||1873 (1881)||Buffalo County||Steele|
|Logan||1873 (1884)||Buffalo County||Napoleon|
|McHenry||1873 (1885)||Buffalo County||Towner|
|McIntosh||1883 (1884)||Logan County||Ashley|
|McKenzie||1901 (1905)||Stark County||Watford City|
|Morton||1878 (1881)||Dakota Territory||Mandan|
|Nelson||1883||Foster and Grand Forks Counties||Lakota|
|Pierce||1887 (1889)||DeSmet (Old), Bottineau, McHenry and Rolette Counties||Rugby|
|Ramsey||1873||Pembina County||Devils Lake|
|Ransom||1873 (1881)||Pembina County||Lisbon|
|Richland||1873 (1875)||Pembina County||Wahpeton|
|Rolette||1873 (1884)||Buffalo County||Rolla|
|Sioux||1915||Standing Rock Reservation||Fort Yates|
|Slope||1914 (1915)||Billings County||Amidon|
|Stark||1879 (1883)||Dakota Territory||Dickinson|
|Steele||1883||Grand Forks, Griggs||Finley|
|Towner||1883 (1884)||Rolette and Cavalier Counties||Cando|
|Traill||1875||Grand Forks, Burbank and Cass Counties||Hillsboro|
|Walsh||1881||Grand Forks County||Grafton|
|Ward||1885||Bottineau, Renville (old) and Stevens (old) Counties||Minot|
|Wells||1881 (1884)||renamed from Gringras County||Fessenden|
|Williams||1873 (1903)||Dakota Territory||Williston|
List of Old Former / Extinct North Dakota Counties
North Dakota contains some counties that no longer exist because they were discontinued, renamed or merged with another county. These are important for genealogy research purposes.
The below counties formerly within the area of the State of North Dakota no longer exist:
- Allred County – In 1896 Allred became a part of Billings; in 1901 Allred was re-created from Billings County; in 1903 it was attached to Williams County; and in 1905 it was abolished when it became part of McKenzie County.
- Buffalo County was created in 1864 and organized in 1871. In 1873 Buffalo lost land to twenty-five counties in Dakota territory; in 1889 Buffalo became a county in the newly created state of South Dakota.
- Buford County was created in 1883. In 1891 Buford was attached to Ward County; in 1892 it was abolished and became part of Williams County.
- Burbank County was created in 1873, renamed to Barnes County in 1875
- French County was created in 1873 from Buffalo County; renamed De Smet County in 1875, eliminated in 1875.
- Dunn County (old) was created in 1883 from Howard Co and became part of Stark Co, 1896
- Flannery County was created in 1883 from Wallette Co . In 1891 Flannery was attached to Ward Co; in 1892 it was abolished and became
part of Williams Co.
- Gringras County was created in 1873 from Buffalo County and renamed Wells County in 1881
- Howard County was created in 1873 from unorganized area; abolished 1883; became part of Allred, Dunn, McKenzie and Wallace Counties
- McKenzie County (old) was created in 1883 from Howard County; abolished 1896; became part of Billings County in 1897
- Pembina County, Minnesota Territory (1849-1858, reconstituted as Pembina County, Dakota Territory in 1861, eventually reduced to present-day Pembina County, North Dakota.)
- Renville County (old) was created in 1873 from Buffalo County; attached to Ward, 1891; abolished 1892; became part of Bottineau and Ward Counties
- Sheridan County (old) was created in 1873 from Buffalo County; abolished 1892; became part of McLean County
- Stevens County was created in 1873 from Buffalo County; The original Stevens County was created in 1862 from unorganized land but was abolished in 1863. This Stevens County was attached to Ward in 1891 and was abolished in 1892 when it became part of McLean and Ward Counties.
- Wallace County was created in 1883 from Howard County; In 1896 Wallace was abolished and became part of Billings and Stark; in 1901 it was re-created from Billings and Stark but remained attached to Stark; in 1905 it was abolished again and became part of McKenzie County.
- Wallette County was created in 1873 from Buffalo County; abolished 1883; became part of Buford and Flannery Counties
- Wynn County was created in 1883 from Bottineau County and Renville County (old); was eliminated in 1887.
COUNTY County, North Dakota
Created on DATE from LAND. COUNTY County was renamed to COUNTY County on November 7, 1907.