Grant Trenbeath was born in Neche, North Dakota, August 31, 1916, the son of William and Ona Trenbeath. He attended school in Neche and graduated from the North Dakota State School of Science, Wahpeton in 1937. He married Marjorie Elias of St. Thomas, North Dakota, October 20, 1939. They had five children, William, Gerald, Julie, Linda, and Jeannie. Trenbeath farmed near Neche. In 1946, Trenbeath was stricken with three types of Polio and was hospitalized in Grand Forks for nineteen months.
Following his release from the hospital, he was confined to a wheelchair, but continued to farm with the help of his family and specially adapted vehicles. Trenbeath ran for the North Dakota State Senate, as an Independent Republican, in 1957, defeating the endorsed Republican candidate in the primary and the Democratic candidate in the general election. He served in the State Senate from 1957 until his retirement in 1970. Trenbeath was an active member of the State Senate, especially in the areas of taxes and water resources. He served as Chairman, Pembina River Basin Association and his main goal was the construction of the Pembilier Dam near Walhalla, North Dakota. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers finally cancelled this federal project after forty years of study. Even after his retirement, Trenbeath stayed active in water resource matters in the Pembina Basin. Trenbeath studied the history of Pembina County and became somewhat of a local historian.
Grant Trenbeath died in Mesa, Arizona, on January 27, 1989.
The Grant Trenbeath Papers date from 1897-1988. The material was received in an unorganized condition and has been reorganized into two series.
Series 1: Political Career/Water Resources in North Dakota
Series 2: Pembina County History
218 photographs were separated and placed in the Photograph File Cabinets.