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Lonely James River Church on a Hill

Lonely James River Church on a Hill

We’ve passed this place a dozen times in our travels. It usually happens something like this… we’re on a tight schedule, wanting to get to all of the places we’ve planned to shoot before the sun sets, or the weather turns bad, so we pass on by, promising to hit it next time. Then, we usually get ten minutes down the road, and we start regretting the choice not to stop. So, this time we decided to stop and photograph this lonely James River Church on a hill overlooking Highway 200, about 16 miles east of Carrington, or 30 miles west of Cooperstown.

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

Grace City, North Dakota

Grace City, North Dakota

Grace City was on our list of places to visit when we stopped in nearby Mose and Juanita in 2004, but we headed off in pursuit of other attractions and didn’t make it to Grace City until May of 2014.

Grace City is in Foster County, about twenty minutes northeast of Carrington, and it had 63 residents as of the 2010 Census

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

Lonely Juanita, North Dakota

Lonely Juanita, North Dakota

Juanita was founded along the Great Northern Railroad Line in 1911, about fifteen miles northeast of Carrington, North Dakota. It was originally named “Wanitah”, a Native American word of unknown meaning, but later renamed by town planners with the Spanish spelling. ┬áIt reached a peak poulation of 150 in 1920. When we visited in 2004, it appeared to have a population around five to ten.

Juanita did have a fairly impressive stone school building, however it appeared to be in use by one of the town’s residents and we chose not to photograph it for privacy’s sake. There was also a big dog running loose which made our visit a quick one.

Juanita, North Dakota

There were quite a few empty homes in Juanita and the landscape is severely overgrown. From one home, only the chimney was visible through the trees. Other than the homes, the school building was the only structure still standing in Juanita.

Juanita, North Dakota

Juanita, North Dakota



Juanita, North Dakota

Juanita, North Dakota

Do you have an update on what’s going on in Juanita these days? Let us know in the comments.

Juanita, North Dakota

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

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