The League Goes Into Business; Expansion Seen in Other States
January 15, 1918
Depending upon its loyal membership for financial support, League leaders have gone into merchandising, banking, and newspaper publishing. The Consumers’ United Stores Company has opened up stores in Kenmare, Minot, and Crosby. Two dozen more are planned for other towns. The stores buy directly from manufacturers and sell groceries, clothing, farm implements, and hardware to their customers at a price lower than other local businesses can charge. The League Exchange, operated by NPL insiders, has gained control of the Scandinavian-American Bank in Fargo and is convincing farmers to put up capital for banks in many other towns.
Realizing that control of the press is important for success, the League is acquiring as many newspapers as it can. It has purchased the Fargo Courier News and has organized the Northwest Publishers’ Service, which is in the process of buying or establishing 45 small-town papers. Townley and League leaders are not content with just their success in North Dakota. They have moved their offices from Fargo to St. Paul, and the North Dakota Farmers’ Nonpartisan League has become the National Nonpartisan League. Townley has organizers working throughout Minnesota and 12 other farm states. He hopes eventually to make the League a powerful national third party.
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.