Dakota Datebook


Sunday, January 11, 2004

In 1884, a site was selected in Towner County to become the new county seat. According to historical reports, one J. W. Connelly objected to the action of creating a new town for the site. County Commissioner Captain Prosper Parker, a County Commissioner, responded, “Gentlemen, we have been appointed to this committee to decide this location, and in virtue of our authority, we select this location and name the town ‘Cando’ to show you that we Can Do it.” Fist fights reportedly followed, but the board wasn’t swayed from its decision. Cando was built and became a city in 1901. Thirty-six years later, it made state history when Baker Rural Electric Cooperative became the first in North Dakota to energize its power lines.

The town has also gone on to proclaim itself the Official Duck Capital of North Dakota because of its ideal habitat on the migration flyway. Cando also boasts two famous sons, former U.S. Representative William Lemke, and professional football player Dave Osborn.

Dakota Datebook written by Merry Helm

This text and audio may not be copied without securing prior permission from Prairie Public.

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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