General Stores

Mrs. Christine Bueschler and sons operated the first general mercantile store in Kulm, having moved their operations there in 1892, and before long, other general stores were established. These included the Zellmer and Lange store, later owned by G. Lange exclusively, and the John Grosz store just north of the post office, as well as the J.M. Erbele store and the Anderson and Hieb establishments.

Drug Stores

The first drug store in Kulm was built in 1894 for J.A.T. Bjornson, on what would later become the northern part of the Farmers Union Oil Company station. Jake Byer, A.G. Ulm, Gordon and Benn, and J.F. Snyder also had drug stores in Kulm, North Dakota.


The first photographer in Kulm was John Reiman, followed by Fred W. Kempf.

Lodging & Restaurants

Even before the railroad was extended to Kulm, Fred Mix was operating the lower floor of his hotel, which was located on the site commonly referred to as the Anderson building.

Robert Roan opened a boarding house for the Soo Line track layers in the summer of 1892, and also established a restaurant on the site where the Standard Service Station, owned by John Stroehl, was later located. Robert Roan also ran the first dray line in Kulm.

When he learned that the Soo Line would be extended to Kulm from Merricourt, the John Hillius family moved a one-room building from Ellendale, adding it to a restaurant bought from Pratts. He later added another floor to the building which he opened to transients.

Other hotels and restaurants were the Kulm House, which was run by E.G. Sweeney, and was located where the J.M. Erbele store later stood.

Beneke and Heller ran a general restaurant, and served coffee at all hours at the location where Jim Weatherly was to later have a cafe. Kennagy and Smith came from Ashley to operate a restaurant in Kulm. An oyster cafe was run by Theodore Gerndt on the north side of what would later become the Palm Department Store.

Wesley Organ, who had a house in southeastern Kulm, kept boarders when the town was being built, sometimes as many as thirty of forty taking meals there.

Otto Becker had a confectionery store north of the Kulm Messenger building, where he lost his life in a fire that destroyed his building in April of 1926.

Jake Smith's Cafe was located in a building that was later occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Max Lay, who ran the Star Cafe.


The first bank in Kulm, North Dakota was established in 1892, with J.B. Sharpe as president and Charles Pruetz as cashier. It was located where the post office is currently situated. The bank's original building was a frame structure, which was destroyed by fire in 1906, after which a brick building was built in its place.

The LaMoure County Bank was established in 1896. M. Olaf Hausken was its president, and the building was a frame structure just north of where the Steinwandt Cafe would later be located. A brick building was later built, later occupied by the Butrick Dry Cleaning plant.


William Watson was one of Kulm's first blacksmiths. Other early blacksmiths were M.F. Brauer and George Schneider, who were partners in a business that was located just south of the Kulm Mill.

Meat Markets

The first meat market in Kulm was probably operated by a Mr. Smith and Ernest Schneider, and was located where the Brost Brothers Hardware Store was later situated.


Kulm had a creamery in 1902. The business was managed by a Mr. Bacon, who was assisted by Charles and Gerald Wright. The creamery was located in southeastern Kulm, and could handle a thousand pounds of butter a day, which was shipped to New York City.

The building was converted into a light plant in 1911, and was later purchased by the Kulm Mill.


The earliest livery was situated across from the Kulm Depot, and east of the Kulm Mill. It was operated first by Fred Flegel, and later by A.B. Malin.

Elijah Organ had a livery barn in southeastern Kulm, next to Wesley Organ's home. Reimenschneider and Guss also had a livery barn east of the Salzer Lumber yard. William Raichle would later run a livery at the same location.