Place Names S

This was a rural post office established April 13, 1907 with Silas Morton, a native of PA who was nearly seventy years of age, as pm  It was located in SW 1/4 Sec. 26-153-95, Elm Tree Twp., one mile to the south of Charlson, and named for the many Sanford families in the area, particularly Paul and  William J.Sanford, neighbors of Mr Morton. Christifer J Graue became pm on March 9,1910, and moved the post office seven miles ESE to his home in SE 2/4 Sec. 35-153-94, River View Twp.  Because of confusion with Lansford, the name was changed to Maynard on August 25,1910


The place began as a rural post office established November 28, 1899 with Charles F Shafer pm. It was named for the pm, with the addition of the "c" credited to G B Metzger (1851-1930), said to be the first settler in the area, who had seen Mr Shafer's name misspelled so many times  that he thought the post office should reflect the incorrect form of the name.  It was located in NE 1/4 Sec. 23-150-98, Schafer Twp., five miles east of Watford City, and was involved with the battles for the county seat in 1905-1906, capturing the honor in 1906 from Alexander.  This resulted in a boom period, with the town reporting a population of 225 in 1920.  The GNRR planned to extend its line from Watford City to New Rockford, but high land acquisition costs caused the railroad to drop these plans, resulting in a rapid decline for Schafer, now destined to be without a railroad.  On June 1, 1941 the county seat was moved to Watford City, and Schafer soon became a ghost town, John K Diehm became pm in 1909, and held that position until the post office closed September 30, 1941 with mail to Watford City. The founder's son, George F Shafer (1888-1948), was governor of ND 1929-1932.


This was a farm post office established July 25, 1916 with Thomas C. Taylor pm.  It was located in NW 1/4 Sec.10-147-103, Thirty-three miles SW of Watford City, and named for the site owner, Julius Searing Taylor, aftter Taylor had been rejected because of duplication in Stark County.  The post office closed March 15, 1921 with mail to Alexander.  It reopened February 7, 1922 in SE 1/4 Sec. 28-147-103, and seven miles SSE of the original site as Searing, but only after a name change to Dean had been rejected.  In 1928 it moved one mile NW to SE 1/4 Sec. 28-147-103, and operated until pm  Annie Kemna closed the facilty September 30, 1952 with mail to  Sidney, MT.  A population of 3 was reported in 1940.


This was a rural post office established May 12, 1911 with Charles H. Holiday pm. It was located in SE 1/4 Sec.28-154-97, Twin Valley Twp., twenty-four miles NNE of Watford City on the south bank of the Missouri River, near the trading post and ferry run by Capt. Edw. Seneschal, for whom it was named after Mr Holiday's suggested name of White City was rejected by postal officials.  ACapt. Seneschal's ferry was sunk during the spring 1917 icebreaking of the Missouri River.  The post office was taken over by Ovid C. Parks in 1915, and by Guy R. Renbarger, a native of IN, in 1916, when it moved four miles ENE to Sec. 23-154-97.  The post office closed October 31, 1918 with mail to Banks.


Many early 1900's sources and maps show Shafer in NE 1/4 Sec. 23-150-98, Schafer Twp., named for Charles E.Shafer (1851-1930), the founder of this settlement who was the head of a prominent family that included a son, George, who would later serve as Governor of ND.  Although this spelling is technically correct, it is said that another pioneer, G B Metzger, suggested using Schafer to coincide with the frequently seen erroneous spelling, and the incorrect version became the official name of the townsite.


This was a rural community founded in 1912 in Sec.22-145-105, Loyal Twp.Thirty-eight miles west of Grassy Butte in extreme SW corner of the county, and named for local rancher Edward Skarr.  K P Hetzler started a country store here in 1912, and the post office was established June5, 1915 with Nancy Clements pm.  A population of 30 was reported in 1920.  The post office closed February 28, 1955 with mail to Sidney, MT, and the store and its contents were sold at auction June 23 ,1955. Skarr still appears on some maps.


This was a rural post office established February 24,1908 with William P Spearin pm.  It was located in SE 1/4 Sec. 20-151-102, Charbon Twp, ten miles WNW of Alexander until 1910, when it moved five miles north to SE 1/4 Sec.  29-152-102, Elk Twp.  The post office closed October 31, 1912 with mail to Alexander.

Squaw Gap

This is the name of a rural community in SW McKenzie County, centered in one of the most sparsely settled regions in the state.  The name notes a local rock formation said to resemble an Indian squaw carrying a papoose, and its location in a gap in the hills. Squaw Gap achieved national attention in 1971 when it became on of the last regions in the country to receive telephone service.


This was a rural post office, the first in McKenzie County, established October 3, 1895 with Jeffrey Edward Hanley (1864-1945) as pm.  It was located in NE 1/4 Sec. 1-152-101, ten miles NNE of Alexander near what was called Baker's Ferry.  The name honored Joesph G Stroud, who had come to this area from TX with his brother, Robert W Stroud.  The post office moved several times within this general area as six additoional pms served the patrons of the region, and closed July 15, 1913 with mail to Williston.