Evan S. Tyler
Mayor from 1876-1877
Evan S. Tyler was born in Damascus, Pennsylvania on March 22, 1843. He was educated at the Damascus Academy. He served two years in the 2nd Pennsylvania artillery in the Civil War, and two years in the office of the commissary of subsistence after the war.
In the late 1860s he settled in Owatonna, Minnesota where he went into business with his brother. He came to Fargo in 1873 and went into partnership with N. K. Hubbard in the mercantile business. Together they also built and operated the second Headquarters Hotel in 1874, after the first one burned.
Mr. Tyler was married to Clara Estella Barnes, the daughter of Judge Barnes. This marriage produced two children; Max and Tannisse. Mr. and Mrs. Tyler built one of the grandest homes in Fargo, but never lived in it. Tragedy struck when Mrs. Tyler died in Minneapolis on February 13, 1883, while the couple was on a shopping trip to buy furnishings for the new home. Mr. Tyler could not bring himself to live in the mansion with out her. This home would eventually become Oak Grove Seminary.
Mr. Tyler had an active political career and was heavily involved in civic affairs. He was elected mayor in 1876 and served one term. He ran for governor of the new state of North Dakota in 1889, but lost by three votes. He was a member of the N.D. State Legislature from 1889-1890 and 1895-1896. He donated much of the land for Island Park, and was instrumental in bringing about Oak Grove Park. He was personally involved in cleaning the properties, and transforming them into some of the cities most beautiful places. He was a member of the El Zagal Shrine and was a founder of the First National Bank of Fargo. He died at the Metropole Hotel on August 20, 1923.