Seventy-Five Delegates Elected to Constitutional Convention; Voters Brave Spring Blizzard
Bismarck, May 15, 1889
Yesterday excited North Dakotans went to the polls to select delegates to the convention which will draw up a constitution for our new state. Many of the races were hotly contested and voters had to fight heavy snow and wind to get to the polls. Red River Valley counties are well represented with 33 delegates — 44 percent of the convention’s members. Cass County, where Fargo is located, has nine delegates. In contrast only three come from west of the Missouri River.
The delegates seem to be a young group with only nine over the age of 55. Some are in their twenties. Farmers number 29; lawyers are well represented with 25. The remaining are businessmen; one is a medical doctor.
The overwhelming political affiliation is Republican with 51. Nineteen are Democrats. The rest represent independent political groups such as the Prohibitionists and the Populists.
Most of the delegates, 52, were born in the United States; 13 from Wisconsin, ten from New York. Ten Scandinavians lead the foreign-born delegates.
Clearly the convention will be dominated by members who have come from the more humid parts of the United States. It remains to be seen whether this influences decision making.
By Dr. D. Jerome Tweton
Originally published as The North Star Dakotan student newspaper, written by Dr. D. Jerome Tweton and supported by the North Dakota Humanities Council.