John E. Haggart

John Haggart was born on April 19, 1846 in New York's St. Lawrence county where his father farmed. After a series of jobs and Army service, Haggart landed four miles south of Fargo in 1871 and took a claim on land on the Sheyenne River in August 1871 . His was one of the first claims in the Red River Valley. He owned about 1960 acres of land on which he grew wheat for many years. Haggart's homestead was between Fargo and Mapleton in an area first named Haggart and now as West Fargo.

Haggart was one of 13 businessmen to establish the Fargo Southern Railroad. He was the first man in the state to be made a Mason, being initiated into the order in 1873.

Shortly after Fargo was incorporated as a city on January 5, 1875, John Haggart was elected the "Town Marshall" by the 600 residents of the city. This was the birth of the Fargo Police Department. In 1875, Haggart married Miss Betsey J. Hertsgaard and they raised nine children.

Haggart was the first sheriff of Cass County, elected in 1874 and served in that capacity until 1887. He was also elected Chief of the Consolidated Fire Companies of Fargo on May 3, 1880.

Haggart was elected to the first state senate in 1889 where he served until 1898 when he resigned to accept the position of United States Marshall for the state of North Dakota. He had previously served eight years as deputy US Marshall. The first bill introduced into the North Dakota State Legislature and the first to become law, was Senator Haggart's senate bill #1, making an appropriation for the Agricultural College at Fargo.

He also served as a member of the state prison board and was instrumental in locating NDAC in Fargo.

In 1916, Haggart and fellow farmers formed the Equity Cooperative Packing Co., which opened a meat-packing plant and 24 houses for its workers east of the Sheyenne River and north of Main Avenue in 1919.