The Dinnie Brothers of Grand Forks, North Dakota

The Dinnie Brothers are probably the largest contractors in the state of North Dakota. More cities and towns in the valley of the Red river are creations of that firm to a larger extent in the brick and stone building line than can be attributed to any other firm in this part of the Northwest. To particularize would be to require mention of almost hundreds of buildings, and in point of time cover a period extending over a quarter of a century.

John and James Dinnie came to Grand Forks, March 20, 1881. They began as common brick-layers and, in a small way, began a career which subsequently led to its present large proportions, and until now, by their skilled work and successful management against all competition, the Red River valley throughout its entire length has been dotted by buildings of their own construction. Their work has also extended west of the Minnesota line as far as Rugby, and for many years they have been giving employment to one and two hundred men constantly, requiring an expenditure annually of one or two hundred thousand dollars. Such buildings as the Young Men’s Christian Association, the Carnegie library, the Clifford building, the Norman Glass block, the Hotel Dacotah, the New Hampshire block and the Corliss block are a few of the many structures that have been erected by this firm in Grand Forks. Fargo was largely rebuilt by them since the fire in 1894. Creditable mention also for much work done in Hillsboro, Grafton, Mayville, Northwood, Larimore, Langdon, Michigan City, Devils Lake and other places should be given to them.

At the present time the firm have some very extensive undertakings on hand: the St. Michael’s Hospital for the Sisters of St. Joseph, a branch of the Sisters in St. Paul; St. Bernard’s Academy; a large three-story building on Third street; the large roller skating rink for W. R. Jack; the school of mines for the State University, and a large building for Mr. Deidlick at East Grand Forks.

The brothers own a brick yard on a three quarter section of land near the State University and manufacture three and four million of brick annually. They obtain their building stone from St. Paul and Minneapolis.

The firm consists of John Dinnie, for eight years mayor of Grand Forks; of James Dinnie, a member of the school board, and of A. S. Dinnie, son of John, who is at the head of the sidewalk department.


C.F. Cooper & Company, History of the Red River Valley, Past And Present: Including an Account of the Counties, Cities, Towns And Villages of the Valley From the Time of Their First Settlement And Formation, volumes 1-2; Grand Forks: Herald printing company, 1909.

Pin It on Pinterest

Scroll to Top