This is Neuberg Congregational Church, in Hettinger County, rural Mott. The church, which is quite remote, nearly 25 miles from the nearest town, was built in 1925 and it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2007.
We visited Neuberg Congregational Church in July of 2014. The sky was thick with haze from forest fires (in Washington, Oregon, or Canada, depending on who you ask) which lent some weirdness to the look of the sky. The light changed by the minute.
Neuberg Congregational Church was founded in 1898 by a group of settlers, Germans from Russia, who had come to America seeking relief from increasingly oppressive living conditions. For seven years, they worshipped at the farm of John Sayler, but in 1905, they bought a vacant Lutheran church and moved it to this site. Twenty years later, their congregation having swelled in number, they chose to build this church. According to the National Register of Historic Places registration form, the settlers that built this church “totally ignored the Russian part of their heritage. They culturally identified as Germans.” Until 1953, all services were held in German.
This church was featured in our hardcover coffee table book, Churches of the High Plains — a great gift for the North Dakota-lover on your list.
Must have been a big congregation. That’s a lot of biffies.
Sometime after we visited in 2014, area residents decided it was time to bring Neuburg Congregational Church back from the brink. Our friend Tim Riley got some photos in 2016.
Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, © 2016 Sonic Tremor Media
Troy Larson is an author, photographer, gentleman adventurer (debatable) from Fargo, North Dakota, and co-founder of Ghosts of North Dakota. @NorthDakotaTroy