Fordville just happened to be on our route as we explored a few towns in Walsh and Ramsey counties. It is not a ghost town or a near-ghost town… more like Pleasantville. According to the 2000 Census, Fordville had 266 residents, shrinking to 212 in 2010.
The most prominent landmark was the Ford Theater, a beautiful brick building that’s been carefully tended, but in need of help with the roof.
The owner kindly posted a flyer which reads as follows:
Est. 1948 by
Hub (Hulbert) and Richard Casement
Construction by: Martin Hustad, Peter and John Peterson.
Brickwork by Arnie Steen
First movie shown: “Little Mr. Jim” on March 19th, 1948.
Starring Butch Jenkins, James Craig, and Francis Clifford
Theatre was closed in the early 1960’s
Purchased by Donald and Jean Omdahl on Dec. 8th, 1970
Used for community plays and gospel services in the 1980’s
Purchased by DeLon Freije
from Don Omdahl on June 18th, 2010
Don went home to Jean on August 31st, 2010
Future plans: Restore theatre, display train collection for public display and offer tours of the theatre.
Popcorn sales on Thursday evenings through the summer
Any help with roof repairs would be much appreciated.
There were a few structures that looked ‘semi-vacant’– in that gray area between seldom used and used every day. No real abandoned structures however. So we just took a few shots that looked nice.
The clock struck noon while we were visiting and the air raid siren on top of this tower sounded.
Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC
Troy Larson is an author, photographer, gentleman adventurer (debatable) from Fargo, North Dakota, and co-founder of Ghosts of North Dakota. @NorthDakotaTroy