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Sargent County Museum

Forman, North Dakota


  8987 Hwy 32, Forman, ND 58032

If sending something use address on the bottom of this column

Outside of MuseumOutside of Museum


 May 31 - August 31, 2022           Hours  will be     

 M-F  10-4:30 

Open Sundays  1-4 

Open Sunday, Sept. 4, 2022

call for other times we can meet you-- closing early this season due to lack of visitors



FREE will offering

If not open call:

Fritzen's: (H)701-724-3720

(Cell) 701-680-1633( lives in Forman)

or call the Manager

Pat Olofson( lives in Gwinner) 


If sending something to us please send to: Sargent County Museum c/o Pat Olofson, 8034 Hwy 32, Gwinner, ND 58040

   Sargent County Museum

                                      Museum Minute

This is the page where we will post the Museum Minute that is written for the local paper.  I'm posting a few of the back issues for you to read.


Museum Minute for May 5, 2017

It is that time of year when the Sargent County Museum is almost ready for the new season.  With the help of Doosan Days in April we now have the tractors and equipment in building #3 up on blocks and not sinking into the ground any longer.  We also have new this year Smart TV’s that will be showing how farming has been through the years.  You will see these in buildings 3 & 4 and we will be adding more video to them as the summer goes on.  We also have new hands on exhibits.  This is where you can touch what we have out in those areas.   You can touch and feel the uniforms and equipment that was used in World War I.  You can type a note out on the manual typewriter.  Or maybe you want to see what a stereoscope is and how you can see the pictures through it.  Then we have the new fossil area in building 4 and when you are done learning there you can do a word search or crossword puzzle on fossils. And do not forget to stop by the phone exhibit in building 2 and sit in the old wooden and tin phone booth and maybe call a friend that is with you and have a party line call.  We are improving to meet your needs and make the Museum something new to stop by and visit.  Our first event of the season is a Family Health Fair.  Stop by Wednesday, May 10 we will be open from 2-8:30 that day with the Health Fair starting at 5:30.  Check out our ad in the paper to see who all will be set up for it.  We are still looking for money donations for a Smart Tv to put in building 1 so that we can tell the story of the war and oral histories of Vets.  Let us know if you would like to be a part of that project. 


Museum Minute for July 22, 2016

This week I put two and two together and found out that many people do not know what we have here at the Sargent County Museum for research materials.  To start with we have many newspapers from the county here either in paper copy or microfilm or both.  Some of the papers are listed here: Cogswell Enterprise, Forman Independent News, Sargent County Teller and the News, Sargent County Independent, Havana Record and Havana Union, Prairie Press, Rutland Leader, Cayuga Citizen, Ransom Pilot.   I do believe we have more to list but I do not have a list in front of me right now.  We also have them dating back to 1887.  This is very useful when you are looking to what happened back then and also to find obits on a family member.  We recently came upon some scrapbooks from 1930’s that have many clippings of obits from the 1920’s – the 1930’s.  Obits back then had a lot of detail in them which helps with family histories.  One obit for Casper Nathe of Rutland in 1928 reads: passed away at his home at 7:30pm, December 8th due to heart trouble. He had been ailing for six years and had been confined to his bed since August.   It goes on to tell of the family and burial but also has a section of those who came to the funeral from a distance.  I find it interesting that people from Forman are listed in this section also. It also stated that John Nathe, a brother, of Meire Grove, was present at his death bed.

The scrapbooks that were given were mostly articles from Milnor and Delamere.  We are now asking if anyone has scrapbooks setting around from the other towns in the county from back in the 1800’s-1960’s to please let us know.  We might like to look through them to see if we can find information that would help in our cemetery project or to have copies for our research area. 

Museum Minute for June 17, 2016


A new display for the Sargent County Museum in Forman, North Dakota is a collection we are calling musical from 1870’s -1920’s.  Back in the 1890’s the average hourly wage was 10 cents for a laborer and around 25 cents for a skilled carpenter.  I also found that the Civil War pensions were about $24 a month.  This will seem amazing when you read what the cost was for some of these musical items when they were new.  Remember they did not have TV’s back then and light was by lantern.  So many families encouraged music to their children.  From learning how to play an instrument to sitting and listening to music that was produced by a music box or cylinder player.   One unique instrument we have in this new display is a “Flute Accordion” which cost around 75 cents in those days.  It is small has a mouth piece and was affordable in its time.  A Concertina was another popular instrument of the time.  This instrument could play nice dance music for all to enjoy and retailed for $4.25.  We have a “Gem Roller Organ” and a “Concert Roller Organ” both are played by moving a crank on the side of the box.  This in turn moves the wooden cylinder which has metal spike like items on it in an order which will play a song.  When these hit the thin metal bars sticking out they produce a sound.  If you crank slowly it is hard to understand the sound (song) but crank at the right speed and you can hear the tune that is meant to be heard.  The “Gem Roller Organ” sold for $3.25 plus you could get a dozen rolls to play with it for $2.16.  The” Concert Roller Organ” was a step up from the “Gem” and sold in the Sears, Roebuck, & Co. catalog in 1905 for $7.60.  These are both a desk top item which in size is 18 inches by 15 inches and 12 inches high for the larger of the two.  We are able to play many of these items in this display so ask to hear them when you come through.   One of the other gems in this collection is the “Regina” Music Player Box which stands 31 inches high and was like a piece of furniture. This player box plays 15 inch metal disks when it is cranked and set to play.  It has a wonderful deep tone to it for being as old as it is.  The last one I will detail is the coin operated “Imperial Symphonion” this machine also plays round tin (metal) disks.  Insert a penny and it will play two tunes for you.  We are an interesting and enjoyable trip any day you choose.  Free will offering is all it takes to see us.  Check us out at    Pat Olofson, Museum Manager


Museum Minute July 15, 2016


  This week we will talk about the Keller Loaders.  We have a collection from Keller’s on display in our second building here at the Sargent County Museum in Forman, ND.  We have the Keller walk-behind snow blower “The Janitor” which was designed and fabricated by Louis Keller in 1949 and approximately 24 were fabricated.  You can also find the Keller self-propelled loader promoted as the: new, fast, rugged, different, compact, dependable, economical, and maneuverable loader to be found at the time.  They were sold exclusively at C & H Sales Co. in Moorhead, MN.  You can also see the original blueprints of this loader in this display.  Louis, Cyril, and Eddie Schillinger their brother – in –law built 6 additional loaders during the year following the delivery of the first Keller Loader.  Antone Christensen, a Melroe dealer and Uncle to Louis and Cyril, introduced them to Les Melroe.  Les worked for Melroe Manufacturing, which manufactured the coil-spring-tooth Harroweeder and the Windrow Pickup attachments for combines. It was already head quartered in Gwinner, ND and had an established dealer network in place. This is all I’m going to write on the story since you can come to the museum on July 23, 2016 and meet Cyril Keller in person and talk to him starting at noon in building one.  We will also have set up a video to watch and posters on the first loaders.  Then at 1 we will move to building 2 and the presentation will begin on how it all started.  You can see the loaders as the talk begins.  We have the M60 Early Prototype, the M60 Early Production Loader, and the M60 Improved Loader which you can hear and see the differences in them.  You will also see the M200 which was the second production model from late 1959.  You will also see the following: Large caster wheel style prototype (this is the only one fabricated in 1960), M610 (eighth Melroe production model and first Bobcat owned by Cyril Keller which was built in 1975), and also the M600 Electric Bobcat used in the mines in 1960. There are many other items of interest in this collection in the same area to see. 


Museum Minute for June 22nd 2016

What is your image of a museum?  Is it a place that is hot and humid?  Is it dark and dusty?  Is it a place that has narrow aisles and hard to get around without hitting something? Does it have items piled around in an area and you do not know what they are?  Do the floors creak when you walk on them?   Many museums have evolved with the times and are climate controlled.  Which means heated, air-conditioned and humidity is controlled to help the artifacts.  They also have lighting so you can see items but they have lighting that protects the objects from harmful uv rays.  Museums have exhibits that tell a story and are marked with signs that tell you what the objects are and when and where they originated from.  Museums have the real objects to see and not photos of the real things. Aisles are wide and handicapped accessible along with their restrooms.  They also have chairs or benches to stop and rest along the way.  If you have not seen a museum like this--- stop at the Sargent County Museum in Forman, North Dakota.    We are working hard to grow and advance in the community and make the Sargent County Museum a place for you to stop, learn, and have fun together!  Our Museum is always a free will donation; we do not charge an entrance fee.