Missouri River acreage "Discrepencies"

Trying to locate other Bakken North Dakota mineral owners that were affected by the Lake Sakakawea land (mineral right) grab made by the State of North Dakota. I have information I would like to share with anyone in the same boat. We need to band together to fight this travesty!


Steve, how do we know if we had mineral rights that were affected ? We currently have several Mineral right leases in ND. Our father purchased most of them in the 50’s and died in the 1980. I don’t know where to start researching. Any information or updates would be appreciated. Thank you, Kay


My grandfather bought land/minerals around the mouth of the White Earth River from the 20's-30's through to the 50's when he and my grandmother relocated to Montana when the Federal Government flooded their land with what is now, Lake Sakakawea. We have patented/deeded minerals that, at the time of Statehood, were situated along the bank of the Missouri river. I have mapped out every acre and it looks like the state is STILL going to take the lions share of 478 acres that are underwater. This time around, the State is using "sovereign" minerals to take our minerals. What lay alongside the Missouri is now cut in half by the river and we still lose the sandbar created on the other shore because of the "lack of vegetation". Needless to say my family and I are not happy as a phone call to someone in the Governors office today produced a massive amount of mumbo jumbo B.S. about how "sovereign" mineral right shift with a riverbed. I was told to educate myself on water law by digging into Devils Lake and how it has affected landowners and the State. Just a clue with the "short" story.... The citizens lose and the State wins.
I'm not giving up. I might be able to squeeze a few acres out and where we are located, it will make a VERY large difference. Let me know if you need any more guidance.

The legwork needed to be done can be started at the BLM website using the 1897 plat to find the land descriptions and the patented deeds. There are maps that you can print out and then draw in the legal descriptions.

Another good reference is:
Hope this helps!


Thank you so much for responding. How frustrating for you. You have been working on this for a long time. I am frustrated and haven’t even started. Our problem is we have no paperwork for the mineral rights. Current mineral rights are accounted for. Thank you for the information. I will try searching for our family’s last name and see what I come up with. Thank you for your help. Good luck to you. Keep fighting!!!

If you have accounted for all minerals and are able to lease them then you are not affected. The BLM site will only list the name of the person who originally purchased the property from the US Government. You need the legal descriptions to find the property starting with the Township and Range. The T 155 R 93 Sec 6 SE1/4 of the SE1/4 type descriptions (just an example) have to be gleaned out of the listings. Very tedious work. The county courthouse is the best place to find info as all deeded minerals can be found there. You can also get certified copies of all paperwork.
You should have something in the form of deeds that show who owns them. There should have been a probate of your family members to put the minerals in your name. The oil companies are getting more and more tighter on proper legal pedigree before leasing minerals.

Thank you for taking the time to respond. Good luck to you!! K