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Jump Back in Time Gilded Age (1878-1889)
Bismarck, North Dakota
Bismarck, North Dakota's capital

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North Dakota and South Dakota Were Admitted to the Union
November 2, 1889

After an armed resistance, the Sioux surrendered the Black Hills to the U.S. in 1877. By 1881, even the powerful chief Sitting Bull had surrendered. The end of the "Indian crisis" and the completion of the Northern Pacific Railway brought more than 100,000 settlers between 1879 and 1886. These new citizens became divided over the location of the capital. Northerners named Bismarck their capital in 1883, while Southerners created their own constitution that year, selecting Pierre as their capital. Congress did not push the matter. Instead, Congress passed a law that officially divided the territory before declaring both North Dakota and South Dakota states of the Union.
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