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Category: Pelto, ND

Nelson County
Vacant as of 7/10

Vanished: Pelto, North Dakota

Vanished: Pelto, North Dakota

Pelto, North Dakota is a town that no longer exists, except in the memory of those who grew up here. Located in Nelson County, between Grand Forks and Devils Lake, Pelto is an example of a settlement that has vanished with the railroad transportation culture that birthed it.

Pelto, North Dakota
Former site of Pelto. Image/Google Earth

In the era of the steam locomotive, there was a town every eight miles along the track, where engines could stop and refill their water tanks. Today, the tracks still pass just north of the site of Pelto, and there’s a nearby farm that looks abandoned, but nearly everything else has vanished.

Nathan Mastrud contributed these photos of Pelto with the following comments:

Pelto is about 42 miles east of Devils lake.  The only thing that really remains of the town is a Pelto tombstone. The fields that surround Pelto are slowing filling with water, abandoned farmsites & pelicans. The road to Pelto is Closed and has water up to the shoulder for most of the trip.

Pelto, North Dakota

The information on the memorial reads:

Pelto Merc Store-Closed 1957

Enterprise Consolidated School-Consolidated 1915-Closed 1969

Pelto Hall

Finnish Lutheran Church Established 1899

Pelto, North Dakota

A single metal milk container remains standing.

Pelto, North Dakota

There are only a few skeletons of the foundations buried in deep prairie grass with a couple automobile parts dumped in the swamp.

Pelto, North Dakota

Photos by Nathan Mastrud and Punchgut Studio

Troy Larson is an author, photographer, gentleman adventurer (debatable) from Fargo, North Dakota, and co-founder of Ghosts of North Dakota. @NorthDakotaTroy