Dakota Datebook

Dutch Cheese

Sunday, November 4, 2007

The son of Dutch aristocracy, Frank Kiebert, a North Dakota rancher, was christened Franciscus J. Vlamingh-Kiebert and grew up in North Holland. His father was a gentlemen farmer who ruled over a country estate called Myn Lust, or “My Desire” in English. After poor investments drained their fortune, the Kieberts sailed to America in 1882, hoping to leave behind bad memories and ruined reputation.
The Kieberts called their new Oliver County home the Alkmaar Ranch, and the entire family worked together to succeed in dairy farming. Alkmaar Ranch’s traditional Dutch products soon became well known nationally for their quality, especially their Edammer cheese. The Kieberts’ cheese won a medal at a New Orleans fair, and the family was later able to sell their cheese to a group of Boston merchants who painted the cheese red and marketed it as “Genuine Edammer Cheese”!

By Ann Erling
“WPA Ethnic History Biographies.” Thomas S. Brown. August 23, 1939.

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Dakota Datebook is a project of Prairie Public, in partnership with the State Historical Society of North Dakota, with funding from the North Dakota Humanities Council.

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