We visited Lostwood, North Dakota in 2010 and found, in addition to a few farms in the neighborhood, only a well-cared for church and a boarded up school as the only real remains of Lostwood.
However, Tim Steele recently sent us some photos with the following comments:
I have two photos of the Steele Store and Post office in Lostwood. Can anyone help me with dates or any info on the Post Office. These pictures came from my grandfather’s photo album. I know they are older than my dad and he was born in 1931.
Webmaster’s note: According to North Dakota Place Names by Douglas Wick, the first Post Office was established in 1907 with Samuel Steele as Postmaster. The Post Office was moved five years later in 1912. If you look closely, you can see an unweathered, unpainted section of wood around the front door, almost as if there was once an entryway attached to the front of this building. Pure speculation but it might be an indication that this photo was taken after the building was moved in 1912…?
Photos contributed by Tim Steele
Original content copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC
Only two structures remain of what was once Lostwood, ND — a well-kept church and a boarded up school. Lostwood is a ghost town in the sense that none of the original structures remain standing other than what you see here. However, there is a family that has a farm on what would have been the north end of town.
There are population figures for Lostwood township in the US Census, but none for Lostwood as a town. According to “North Dakota: Every Town on the Map and MORE,” by Vernell and Louise Johnson, Lostwood was first known as Chida, then renamed for the lake nearby, which had been named Lostwood Lake by settlers after a load of wood was lost there in a blizzard.
Lostwood is quite remote, and is situated on gently rolling grassland.
Tim Steele sent some photos of Lostwood’s post office back in the day, and we’re trying to figure out what year the photo was taken. Can you help?
This school is so evocative in real life. Just bending on one knee here to take a photograph, it’s easy to have a moment of nostalgia while imagining students coming and going, carrying lunch pails and dressed in the clothing of the era.
Lostwood School was featured in our first book, Ghosts of North Dakota, Volume 1.
Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright Sonic Tremor Media