Shepard View, 1905

By / May 4, 2014 / Points of Interest

As we drove north along County Road 19 about four miles south of Cooperstown, I was blabbing on about something when Terry suddenly pointed. “What’s that?”

Shepard View, 1905

We had just passed the junction of 19 and 22, and atop a small hill on the east side of the road, a large brick structure was barely visible through the trees.  I pulled the car into the driveway, and we found ourselves thirty feet from the highway but almost completely shielded from view by the shelter belt that runs the perimeter of the property.  If we had been driving this same stretch of road in the summer, with the leaves on the trees, we might not have seen this place at all.

Shepard View, 1905 Shepard View, 1905

This structure is less than a mile east from the rural settlement of Shepard, North Dakota. The size of the building and the larger estate (the barn you’ll see below), plus the fact that it has a name — “Shepard View” — made us wonder whether this had once been a boarding house or an institution of some kind.

Update: Visitor Dustin tells us this home is likely the former estate of David Marson. The Marsons arrived in Griggs County from Derby, England in 1889.

Shepard View, 1905 Order BooksShepard View, 1905 Shepard View, 1905 Shepard View, 1905 Shepard View, 1905 Shepard View, 1905

Inside the barn.

Shepard View, 1905

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

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Troy Larson

Troy Larson is a father, husband, author, photographer, publisher and devoted cat person. Troy is the President of Sonic Tremor Media and co-founder of


Anne Oppegard

How interesting! I hope someone can provide the missing story on this!


A family member shared this on Facebook, and I thought I’d share some info on this house. This house was built by the Marson family, who immigrated from Derby, England to Griggs County, ND in 1889. Below are some excerpts from the Griggs County history book which mentions that family and the two brick houses they built between 1904-1906 in that area of Ball Hill Township:

It was very common to give houses a name in England, especially around those times ( which explains the name plaque on the side. As you pointed out, this house is near Shepard, ND, hence the name Shepard’s View.

I’m a direct descendant (great great grandchild) of Charles C. Marson who built one of the brick houses mentioned in the article above, and his son David Henry Marson was a brother to my great grandfather and he built the other brick house. If I have my story straight which is mostly from stories overheard when I was very young, your photos are of the house David built. I lived on the farm about a mile from this brick house until I was about 5 or 6 years old, that farm was sold over 2 decades ago but I’m not sure who owns the land the brick house is on and how long ago it was sold by the Marsons.

As you can tell, it has been vacant for quite a few decades, probably since around or before that generation of Marsons passed away in the 60s. I’ve been inside it quite a few times, there used to be a couch in there which was either originally there from the family or put there for kids to have secret parties, which as you know is commonplace in rural ND. It looks like the couch must be gone, last I saw it over a decade ago, it was just springs. I’d like to get in there and get a few pieces of that wallpaper before the whole place falls down some day.

Here’s my genealogy page for Charles C which contains a path to David Marson:


There was a grain elevator in the town of Shepard. My husband worked there in 1961. He fell off a ladder and broke his back on the same day and same time as Alan Sheperd went into space and came back down.


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