Imagine a vast plain. Its fertile soil was covered with a blanket of grass and wildflowers swaying in rhythm to what seemed like an eternal wind. The silence of this infinite wilderness gave way to early pioneers who formed a community that thrived in this valley carved by ancient glaciers and the meandering Redstone Creek. The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad blazed a trail westward into the Dakota Territory, and Manchester was born. Eventually, the Black and Yellow Trail, a precursor of Highway 14, went right down the main street.
After trying "Fairview" for a short time, the town finally took the name of its first postmaster, Chester H. Manchester. The post office opened on June 29,1881. Manchester had numerous family homes, a Town Hall, Grocery stores, livery barns, a lumber yard, two grain elevators, a depot, a restaurant, a cream station, a bank, a pool hall, auto repair and blacksmith shops, gas stations, two churches, a system of township schools, including Manchester High School, a hotel, a newspaper, and a fabled Town Pump.
With improvements in transportation, people had the option of selling grain and buying supplies in bigger towns. The population declined, and eventually, the town of Manchester was destroyed by a devastating tornado on June 24, 2003.
The pioneering spirit of
all who have lived in the Manchester Township community inspires us with its creativity, determination, and neighborliness. In the presence of the world's most magnificent sunrises and sunsets, those who work this fertile land and graze its green pastures keep the Spirit of Manchester alive for generations of people whose roots are firmly planted in this sacred soil.