North Dakota is one of the particularly sparsely populated US states, but has a very strong economy and a low unemployment rate.

North Dakota is a very sparsely populated state in the northwestern United States. Its capital is Bismarck.

Name, location and residents of North Dakota

The eastern tribal and dialect group of the Sioux called Dakota, who lived and still lives in the area before the arrival of Europeans, served as the namesake for the state. North Dakota borders the Canadian provinces of Manitoba and Saskatchewan and the US states of Montana and South Dakota. To the west across the Bois de Sioux River and the Red River of the North lies Minnesota. An estimated 760,077 residents live in an area of 183,112 km² (as of 2018). This puts North Dakota in third from last place in the United States in terms of population density. 41% of residents state that they have German roots (as of 2014). In some areas there are quite large numbers of Indian communities.

A brief history of North Dakota

When the fur trader La Vérendrye set foot in what is now North Dakota at the beginning of the 18th century, he met Indian tribes with whom a modest trade was established in the following years. In March 1861, the Dakota Territory was established. After the separation of several territories and the division of the area into a northern and southern part, North Dakota received its current borders. Settlement was slow at first because the Indian tribes were considered hostile. After the subjugation of the Sioux, more and more settlers came to the area, especially from Western and Northern Europe. In November 1889, North Dakota became the 39th state to join the Union.

North Dakota today

North Dakota is an economically strong state. Real GDP per capita in 2016 was well above the national average (5th out of 50) and the unemployment rate was the second lowest in the United States at 2.6% in November 2017. Agriculture is an important industry. Important products are potatoes, cereals and flax. The state is also the largest producer of wheat, barley, and sunflower seeds in the United States.

North Dakota State Bird and Flower

Largest Counties in North Dakota by Area

According to Countryaah, the biggest counties in North Dakota are listed as below:

Ranking County Area
1 McKenzie County 7,102 km2
2 Stutsman County 5,755 km2
3 McLean County 5,465 km2
4 Williams County 5,364 km2
5 Ward County 5,214 km2
6 Dunn County 5,206 km2
7 Morton County 4,988 km2
8 McHenry County 4,854 km2
9 Mountrail County 4,724 km2
10 Cass County 4,574 km2
11 Bottineau County 4,323 km2
12 Grant County 4,299 km2
13 Burleigh County 4,229 km2
14 Emmons County 3,911 km2
15 Barnes County 3,864 km2
16 Cavalier County 3,856 km2
17 Grand Forks County 3,724 km2
18 Richland County 3,722 km2
19 Benson County 3,597 km2
20 Kidder County 3,502 km2
21 Stark County 3,465 km2
22 Walsh County 3,320 km2
23 Wells County 3,292 km2
24 Divide County 3,261 km2
25 Slope County 3,155 km2
26 Ramsey County 3,072 km2
27 Bowman County 3,010 km2
28 Billings County 2,984 km2
29 LaMoure County 2,971 km2
30 Hettinger County 2,932 km2
31 Dickey County 2,929 km2
32 Pembina County 2,898 km2
33 Burke County 2,859 km2
34 Sioux County 2,833 km2
35 Mercer County 2,707 km2
36 Towner County 2,655 km2
37 Pierce County 2,637 km2
38 Golden Valley County 2,595 km2
39 Logan County 2,572 km2
40 Adams County 2,559 km2
41 Nelson County 2,543 km2
42 McIntosh County 2,525 km2
43 Sheridan County 2,517 km2
44 Rolette County 2,336 km2
45 Renville County 2,266 km2
46 Ransom County 2,235 km2
47 Traill County 2,233 km2
48 Sargent County 2,225 km2
49 Oliver County 1,875 km2
50 Steele County 1,844 km2
51 Griggs County 1,834 km2
52 Foster County 1,645 km2
53 Eddy County 1,637 km2