Griggs County Farmers Mutual Fire & Lightning Insurance Company

A meeting was held June 10, 1916 at the Griggs County Court House, Cooperstown, North Dakota to organize a county mutual insurance company in Griggs County for the purpose of insuring the property of its members against loss, damage by fire, and lightning on the county mutual plan.  At this meeting W. P. Houghton was named chairman

Louis Berg, secretary

and H. P. Hammer, Treasurer.  Twenty-two farmers signified their intention of becoming members by paying a membership fee.  The name chosen for the company was Griggs County Farmers Mutual Fire and Lightning Insurance Company.

Nothing further was done until sometime in the winter when M. F. Washburn and Louis Berg secured $25, 000 worth of insurance applications.  This was enough to allow them to secure a charter from the state.

At a meeting held March 10, 1917 in Berg Brothers office the first board of directors was elected as follows: 

T. A. Huso, Gunder Trostad, E. E. Iverson, Henry Asmus, A. O. Retzlaff, B. W. Hazard, C. K. Stromme, H. G. Rohlwing, M. Mogaard, E. Savre, H. H. Langford, Wilmot Houghton, Fred Detwiller, M. F. Washburn, and Frank J. Pfeifer.  The Directors then held a meeting and elected the first officers to serve for a one year term with E. Savre elected President

Fred Detwiller, Vice-President

M. F. Washburn, Secretary, and Louis Berg, Treasurer.

The Company commenced business on May 15, 1917, with its home office and principal place of business at Cooperstown, North Dakota.  On this date the first policies were also issued.

The Company is controlled by its membership, which consists of persons or organizations having insurance in force therein, and the management of its business affairs is vested in a board of directors composed of fifteen members elected at the annual meeting of the membership by a plurality vote.  Annual meetings of the membership are held on the last Friday in June of each year.  Directors are elected for staggered terms of three years each and the directors select from their members a President and Vice President.  They also select a Secretary and Treasurer who may or may not be members of the Board.  An adjuster- inspector is also appointed.

In 1963 the Company began writing windstorm and hail coverage (except on growing crops) and reinsures these risk, 100%.  The home office building is located on the main street of Cooperstown, is a two-story frame structure, and was purchased by the Company in 1970.

Source: Griggs County History 1879 - 1976 Page 45


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