Palermo, ND

By / June 2, 2005 / Palermo, ND

Palermo is in Mountrail County, and quite populous compared to most towns you’ll see on this website, but there were a good number of abandoned structures that made for some great photo opportunities.

US Census Data for Palermo
Total Population by Place

1960 – 188
1970 – 146
1980 – 97
2000 – 77
2010 — 74

Palermo was founded in 1901 as a Great Northern Railroad town made up of primarily Norwegian settlers. It’s name was a tribute to the Italians who worked on the area railroads.

CLICK PHOTOS TO ENLARGE

Palermo, ND

The school pictured here was built under the Works Progress (later ‘Projects’) Administration program and a site visitor reports it was used until the ’89-’90 school year.

Palermo, ND

The school is an impressive brick and stone building with art deco touches.

Palermo, ND Palermo, ND

The small white building pictured here is the former Palermo Firehouse and Jail. There’s a story going around that Palermo welcomed transients and allowed them to use this structure as a place to bed down, but the town later changed their minds and ran off all the vagrants due to fear of vandalism.

Palermo, ND Palermo, ND

One of Palermo’s notable former residents would be Miss North Dakota 2001, Michelle Guthmiller.

Palermo, ND Order Ghosts of North Dakota Books Palermo, ND Palermo, ND Palermo, ND Palermo, ND

Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC

adjective: abandoned

1. having been deserted or cast off.

verb: abandon

1. cease to support or look after; desert.

2. leave (a place or vehicle) empty or uninhabited, without intending to return.

3. condemn someone or something to (a specified fate) by ceasing to take an interest in or look after them.

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25 Comments

T. R.

Just wanted to leave a correction for you — the Palermo school pictured above was in use until the 1989-90 school year.

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Andrea

The old Hotel is now gone…. My mom says they tore it down. Glad you got it before it was gone!

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joshua cables

Hey I got the opportunity to go inside of the school there… I just have no way to post up the pictures i had taken of it but it turned out to be a really interesting trip for us… if someone can email me on how to post pictures on the site I would be glad to share.

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Curtis Sloan

Palermo High School 1958_1959 would have been in class of1961
My best to the class of 1961 reuion comming up in 2001

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allan christoferson

Hi Curt, was there in 2009 for my fiftieth reunion also there in 2011. Allan Christoferson

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Curtis Sloan

Been along time and alot of water under under the bridge. Schoolhouse looks pretty good considering it’s age. I would like to see the inside. I was never in the new part. Hope all is well with you and yours

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Burton McLean

My dad’s cousin ranched a short period somewhere southwest of Palermo. The only time I was there, we stopped at the school and picked up my three cousins to save them the long bus ride home. This was in the mid-60’s, so half of us kids were still pretty small. But it was still 9 people in a ’59 Ford sedan! Pre-seatbelts… and I’m pretty sure we didn’t have written consent to pick up my cousins!
As some sort of revenge I suppose, they sent us home with a scrawny cat we named Palermo. No one who holds Palermo the town dear to their heart should be offended though, we kids thought we were bestowing a great honor!

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Kathy C. now P.

I went to school there grades 1-11, then moved to Oregon. The brick school has been vandalized beyond repair. My grandfather put the windows in that school, I believe.

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Lisa Stenslie-Budd

They used to have some great street dances in Palermo. I grew up in Stanley and the Palermo were the highlight of our summer.

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david w nystuen

My grandfather broke wild horses and sold them to the Indians in the area. My mother was born here in 1912.

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dave linnertz

Went to school in Surrey. Played basketball at Palermo. Some times the heating ducts got in the way of your shot. Definitely a home court advantage.

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Leslie Stave Sandgren

I LOVE this building and I spent some of the best days of my life in it with people that I loved dearly then and still do today! We had THE BEST carnivals in the area and the street dances and alumni banquets were always highpoints of the year as well. We were all devastated when our school closed, but we will forever be “BOBCATS” in our hearts!!

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DuWayne Grinolds

Thanks for the tribute. Palermo was not only my elementary school, it also was my home. The school built an apartment in the upper level for me an my family. I had the fortune of growing up with a library and a full gym in my house. I remember every inch of the building.

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ramona

My grandma Ostdahl owned the little restaurant in Palermo. My dad is Clarence. It was great going up there when we were kids. Loved it and sure do miss them times.

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Brad Pettit

many a summer spent with the Grand parents…”Bing & Mamie….fond childhood memories 1st kiss …Susie Johnson….best summer ever

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dave linnertz

I played basketball against Palermo in the mid 60s. Sometimes the HVAC pipes would get in the way of your shot! It was about a 90 mile bus ride from Surrey where I was a student. A long ride on a winters night.

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