Home< DeGroat

De Groat Township 156, Range 65

Early Settlers

Carl Martin Nees came from Norway to Minnesota to work for his uncles, Magnus and Hans Hansen. Two years later he came to Ramsey County to investigate opportunities to secure land under the Homestead Act. He file on three quarters of land before returning to Minnesota. In the spring of 1882 he and his bride Mathilda traveled to their homestead with two wagons, one a covered wagon carrying household goods and pulled by a team of oxen driven by Mathilda who had experience handling them, and one a horse drawn wagon loaded with tools and a few implements, leading a cow and a calf. Upon their arrival, they put the covered wagon on the ground and set up housekeeping. It was here on September 14, 1882 that Clara Nees, the first white child born in Ramsey County, was delivered with the aid of a midwife. By fall, they moved into a dugout located a few feet from the present house. Poles needed for the dugout roof were made from trees cut and hauled from Sweetwater Lake twelve miles away.

In 1886, Mathilda died. Later Carl married Anna Hoistad who had come from Fargo to join her family. She later told about her arrival on July 4th, 1883 on the first train to come to Devils Lake. The Minnie H was docked near the railroad station. As the passengers crowded to one side to see the train arrive, the boat almost tipped. By 1894 when Oliver was born, the family had a two room house. With later additions, it developed into the 'home place' as it is today.


De Groat

According to Andreas' 1884 Historical Atlas of Dakota: Ramsey County, there was a post office located in De Groat Township.


The Chain Lakes Lutheran Church and Cemetery  in Churches Ferry became the American Lutheran Church in 1960.
It is located in De Groat township.
The Churches Ferry Cemetery is located in Churches Ferry. 

Looking for Information on this townships

If you wish to submit data for this township, please contact Colleen Goltz Ramsey County Coordinator since 19 April 2013.