Part 1: North Dakota Agriculture

Profile: Sodbuster Days

Every year, a group of people interested in preserving the farm life heritage of the early 1900s puts together an event called “Sodbuster Days.” This event takes place at the historic Sunne Farm located within the Fort Ransom State Park near Fort Ransom, North Dakota.

Figure 29. Mules pull a binder

Figure 31.  Mules pull a binder at Sodbuster Days, Fort Ransom State Park, North Dakota.  (Neil Howe)

Figure 28. This man demonstrates the skill of blacksmithing

Figure 32.  A man demonstrates blacksmithing at Sodbuster Days, Fort Ransom State Park, North Dakota.  (Fort Ransom Sodbusters Association)

During Sodbuster Days, teams of draft horses and mules provide power for field work, haying, threshing, and “putting hay in the barn.” Blacksmiths show the skill of the early pioneers in working with iron to make what was needed on the farmstead. A group of pedal-powered woodworking tools shows what it took to do fine woodworking before the invention of electric tools and saws.

Homemaking skills are also demonstrated. Spectators can learn how to quilt, embroider, and spin wool.

Visitors who want more action can ride in a horse-drawn wagon, pitch grain bundles into a threshing machine, or play pioneer games. History comes to life during the activity-filled weekend of Sodbuster Days.