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5 Fun Facts About May 6 In North Dakota History

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1. In 1884, the North Dakota Agricultural College (now North Dakota State University) officially opened its doors in Fargo, becoming the first land-grant institution in the state. Today, the university is a leading research institution and home to over 14,000 students.

2. On May 6, 1937, the Hindenburg disaster occurred in Lakehurst, New Jersey. The airship had stopped in North Dakota just a few days earlier, on its way to California. The accident, which killed 35 people, remains one of the most iconic incidents in aviation history.

3. In 1954, North Dakota became the first state to pass a law prohibiting discrimination based on race, color, and religion. The landmark legislation was signed by Governor Norman Brunsdale on May 6, and helped pave the way for federal civil rights laws.

4. On May 6, 1983, the town of Cooperstown was hit by an F4 tornado. The devastating twister destroyed much of the town, killing four people and injuring dozens more. The tornado was one of the strongest to ever hit North Dakota.

5. In 2004, the State Historical Society of North Dakota opened the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center in Washburn. The center tells the story of the famous explorers' journey through North Dakota, and features exhibits, multimedia presentations, and a full-scale replica of the expedition's keelboat.
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