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A Considered View: Wayne Gudmundson

Price: $29.95 * Electronic Order Form

While many photographers attempt simply to capture a finite event, Gudmundson supersedes this effort in order to convey the nature of existence and geography. The relationship of experience to environment is the essence of what we refer to as "place." It is the artist's deeply personal sense of place, rather than the phenonenon itself, that makes the work challenging and powerful. -- Edward Pauley

Wayne Gudmundson's eye seeks the horizon. Perhaps it is so he can see farther, but more likely it is so he can see into the past, reaching for meaning in the marks that people have left on the land. Gudmundson's photographs, whether they are of North Dakota prairies, Minnesota towns, or Icelandic wilderness, all include the horizon, and nearly all show the touch of man. -- Thomas Riley




Verendrye, 2005

South of Edinburgh, 1990

North of Carson, 1994

About the Author

Wayne Gudmundson was born in 1949 in Fargo, North Dakota. His work has appeared in eight books in addition to A Considered View, and forms part of the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal, and the U.S. Embassy in Reykjavik, Iceland. Gudmundson teaches photography at Minnesota State University Moorhead and is director of New Rivers Press.


Dacotah Territory; A 10 Year Anthology: edited by Mark Vinz and Grayce Ray

Price: $ 9.75 * Electronic Order Form

All of the poems in this collection were originally published in Dacotah Territory Magazine; we decided against selecting any poems we reprinted from other magazines or books, and also against selecting either prose poems or translations.

What we sought was always two-fold: to tap into the poetry of place flourishing around us, but never to be simply limited by it; to take a stand against the placelessness of American society, but not with "down-homeism," or ... with any kind of ism. A sense of place as we tried to define it, then, was quite different from many people's notion of regionalism, and it was that end we sought:

We see ourselves, then, as importers and exporters, seeking the best work from both new and established writers no matter what their place - that unique vitality which partakes of both the local and international simulaneously.

In general terms, what brought about Dacotah Territory was a recognition of the talents and energies around us (and the scant number of publishing outlets in the Midwest), and the gradual exploration of the term "a sense of place" and its implications.

Dakota Circle: Tom Isern

Price: $19.95

Dakota Circle is a wry, sometimes humorous, always insightful description of the people and things that make up the Great Plains. From the odd something in Absaraka, North Dakota to Montana Caviar, plum butter recipes and the large sculptures that dot its level landscapes, Tom Isern lays before the reader enough significant slices of Plains life to make a whole pie.

This book is a collection of essays and articles based on Isern's research and travels on the northern plains over the past two decades. Material in the work derives also from his weekly newspaper column, Plains Folk, which is distributed by NDSU Extension and appears weekly and widely across the region;

Dakota Circle concludes with the now-notorious "You Must be from North Dakota" list of regional virtues and ideosyncrasies.

An Excerpt from Dakota Circle

There stands still another monument to the dairy boomlet of the northern plains--Salem Sue, the World's Largest Holstein. Fifty feet long, 38 feet tall, fiberglass, she stands on School Hill, near the town of New Salem, ND.

The Salem Sue story goes back to 1906, when pioneer dairyman Dave Young got disgusted with the poor grade of cows in the New Salem vicinity and decided to do something about it. He took orders from his neighbors, went over the Wisconsin, and brought back two cars full of registered Holsteins. The farmers of New Salem, organized as the New Salem Holstein Circuit, became the darlings of the dairy scientists over at Fargo. The New Salem folks soon won renown for fine registered Holsteins, showed them frequently, and sold breeding stock to every other county in the state.

The schools of New Salem adopted the Holstein as their symbol and designated black-and-white their school colors.

It was in about 1970 that someone at the bank had the idea for a Holstein monument. The bank made the first donation toward the project, which was organized by the local Lions Club. . . . The Lions said they wanted to honor dairymen, promote tourism, and simply have the biggest cow in the world.

About the Author

Tom Isern, Distinguished Professor of History at North Dakota State University, has lived all his life on the Great Plains of North America. Because his mid-life crisis began at about age nineteen, he has spent a long time thinking about what it means to live and work on the plains. He has written or co-authored five previous books about life on the plains and since 1983 has co-authored the weekly newspaper column, "Plains Folk." In the year of publication of Dakota Circle, he was named NDSU's Fargo Chamber of Commerce Distinguished Professor.



Dakota Territory, 1861-1889: Howard Roberts Lamar

Price: $25.00 * Electronic Order Form

Yale professor Howard Lamar's study of this legendary swath of American plains has become a classic of Western history. First published some four decades ago, the compelling story of territorial power and intrigue still dramatizes the astounding confidence and rugged determination of this country's Old West pioneers. This political history of the Dakotas at their infancy offers readers a powerful picture of the politicians who carved a government out of a frontier and turned it into not one, but two huge states.

The Institute for Regional Studies is proud to bring back a work long out of print, and deserving of presentation to a new generation of Western historians and others who want to learn more about this fascinating era in American history.

"The work has stood the all-important test of time. His theme, that Dakota Territory's political history is the story of the people's struggle to overcome the power of the 'interests,' has for the most part continued to be the history of North Dakota." - from the new forward by Jack Dalrymple, Dalrymple Farm, Casselton, ND.

About the Author
Howard Lamar is one of America's most important Western historians. Born in Tuskegee, Ala., in 1923, he received his PhD from Yale University in 1951. He has been at Yale since, serving in a number of teaching and administrative roles, including president of the university in 1992-93. He has written and edited a number of books and articles on Western history. Since 1994 he has been Sterling Professor of History Emeritus at Yale.

Darkhouse Spearfishing Across North America: Jay Leitch

Price: $14.95 * Electronic Order Form

It has been nearly ten years since the first edition of Darkhouse Spearfishing Across North America was published. The 1,000 copies of the first edition, printed in 1992, were sold out by late 1996. They were sold to spearing enthusiasts, book stores, libraries, bait shops, collectors, and others as far away as Alaska, New England, and California. However, there was still a strong demand for this book, since it is the only book in print devoted entirely to darkhouse spearfishing.

Many parts of the first printing appeared in Jackfish Journal and other local outdoor sports newspapers. Fur-Fish-Game magazine published a summary in 1994 ("Darkhouse Spearfishing," Fur-Fish-Game 91(2):12-15) and some photos were published in Outdoor Life magazine (January 1997). The Second Edition contains all the text that was in the First Edition. Text has been added in several areas-36 additional pages--especially in the chapters on Alaska and South Dakota, and some additional photos are included.

The four parts of the book contain 14 chapters. Part I provides the background with chapters on introduction, history, and the controversy. Part II provides an overall description with chapters on shelters, equipment, and a day in the darkhouse. Part III covers spearing activity in each of the seven states where it is practiced Minnesota, Alaska, Michigan, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Part IV, precautions & predictions, discusses ice fishing safety and provides some concluding comments. In his foreword Philip Nusbaum, Minnesota State Arts Board folklorist, writes "Jay Leitch has delivered the definitive treatment of spearing, told in a way that is factual, yet also relates to the depth of feeling the old-timers have for the sport."

There are nearly 100 photographs and over 30 drawings. Many of the facts and arguments in the book are backed by the 75 references to other publications.


About the Author

The author, Jay A. Leitch, grew up in Otter Tail County, Minnesota. He is a life member of the Lakes Chapter of MD&AA and VFW. His real job is dean of the College of Business Administration at North Dakota State University. He has published widely as a professional in the areas of water and wetlands policy, public finance, and economic development. Since the first printing of this book in 1992, he has written an article about spearing for a national outdoors magazine, had spearing photos printed in another national outdoors magazine, and had most of the book reproduced in bits and pieces in various local and regional outdoors newsletters. Jay is a Vietnam veteran and retired Naval Reserve Intelligence Officer. He lives with his wife, Becky, and their twins, Forrest and Rachel, along the Red River of the North, just north of Moorhead, Minnesota. (The northern weighed 28 pounds.)

Depression: Minnesota in the Thirties

Price: $7.50 * Electronic Order Form

An Excerpt from Depression: Minnesota in the Thirties

Farmers crowd into St. Paul to demand help, 1935.

John Bosch's stomach churned with anxiety as he saw his neighbors lose their farms and watched his crop sell for a few cents a bushel. Hard working and dedicated to his land, he could not tolerate the sight of the despair around him. The Reverend George Mecklenburg sat at his desk in his downtown Minneapolis church. His heart wrenched as he witnessed the daily parade of hungry, unemployed people pass through the shadow of the cross. He knew that the 20,000 who walked the streets without jobs had devoured the city's relief funds. The gloom on their faces tormented his conscience. Governor Floyd B. Olson impatiently paced back and forth in his office. Each report which crossed his desk roused his sensitive compassion for the well-being of the people. His state was under siege: farmers were ready to strike; restless urban workers demanded immediate relief; unemployment on the iron range pressed toward 70 percent. The worsening condition of his state made him angry. It was 1932. The depression had struck Minnesota.





Child pickets, 1937.



About the Author
D. Jerome Tweton is a well-known author and historian who has written four books and dozens of articles about the Midwest and its people. He received his B.A. from Gustavus Adolphus College, M.A. from the University of North Dakota, and Ph.D. from the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Tweton recently retired from his position as Professor of History at the University of North Dakota, a position he held since 1965.

Five for the Land and Its People: Bill G. Reid

Price: $12.00 * Electronic Order Form

Five for the Land and Its People tells the story of five pioneering agri-scientists who devoted their considerable energies and abilities to the North Dakota Agricultural College and Experiment Station. The author, Bill G. Reid, has based his account on the extensive archival material available in the North Dakota Institute for Regional Studies on the campus of North Dakota State University. He has fashioned readable portraits of each of the five men - Clare Bailey Waldron, Henry Luke Bolley, Edwin Fremont Ladd, John Henry Shepperd and Lawrence Root Waldron. By combining personal glimpses of the five with a narrative of their professional achievements and disappointments, he has produced an account of men who lived in another age but who are understandable to the present generation.


Building the road near College Hall at NDAC (later called Old Main) ca 1892.

About the Author
Bill Reid taught American history at North Dakota State University for 19 years before retiring in 1986. He also was a member of the faculties of Lamar State (Texas), East Central (Oklahoma) State, and Wichita State University. In addition to his teaching role at NDSU, Reid served as University archivist as well as both archivist and editor for the North Dakota Institute for Regional Studies. Reid received his doctorate at the University of Oklahoma after completing work on his B.A. and M.A. degrees at Eastern New Mexico University. Reid received the Blue Key Distinguished Educator Award in 1982.

Student Focused. Land Grant. Research University.

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College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
North Dakota State University
Phone: +1 (701) 231-8338 - Fax: (701) 231-1047
Campus address: Minard Hall 204
Mailing address: Dept 2300 PO Box 6050, Fargo, ND  58108-6050
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Last Updated: Thursday, October 15, 2015 2:53:16 PM