South Dakota Facts

South Dakota has been officially added to the United States in 1803. It was a part of the Louisiana Purchase. In addition, the first permanent settlement in America was founded in 1804 at Fort Pierre by the Lewis and Clark expedition. However, the white settlement of the territory has clashed with the Sioux in 1800s. Some of the lands in the settlement have been parted and granted to the tribe by an earlier agreement.

Nonetheless, the territory was inducted as part of the union on November 2, 1889, alongside North Dakota. There also has been a controversy as to which state would be included in the union first. That said, President Benjamin Harrison rearranged the bills, then signed one randomly. The order was never recorded, but North Dakota is listed first traditionally.

In today’s South Dakota, the state’s economy is supported by tourism, with big thanks to Mt. Rushmore. It is the site of the 60-foot sculpture of the faces of the former United States Presidents Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln.

Population : 853,175 as of 2014

Year Founded : November 2, 1889

Flag :

The flag of the state of South Dakota features the seal of the state bounded by a golden blazing sun in a sky blue field. The words “South Dakota, The Mount Rushmore State” are also seen arranged in a circle enveloping the sun.

Annual GDP :  $39.8 billion as of 2010

People Living in the State : White, American Indian, African American, Asian, Native

Main Industries or Sources of Income : Agriculture, Manufacturing, Mining, Tourism


Major Cities and Areas :

Aberdeen(23591)Academy(1750)Ada(1751)Agency Village(3485)Albee(1750)Alcester(2238)Alexandria(3529)Allen(28)Alpena(1764)Alsen(5250)Alsville(1751)Altamont(1765)Ames(15750)Anderson(1752)Andover(1756)Appleby(22705)Ardmore(1602)Argonne(1750)Arlington(2297)Armour(1762)Arpan(1750)Artas(1750)Artesian(1761)Astoria(1852)Auance(3500)Aurora(1984)Avon(1756)Bad Nation(1750)Bailey(1750)Bakerville(3500)Baltic(399)Bancroft(1750)Bath(1)Bear Butte(8754)Beardsley(1750)Belle Fourche(5522)Belvidere(1278)Bemis(1752)Ben Claire(1750)Beresford(1072)Betts(15756)Big Stone(1750)Big Stone City(28)Big Stone Cty(297)Bijou Hills(5250)Billsburg(1750)Black Hawk(5421)Blue Dog Lake(3500)Blunt(1759)Bonesteel(1735)Bonilla(1750)Box Elder(3709)Bradley(1828)Brandon(3767)Brandt(1849)Bridgewater(1774)Bristol(1898)Britton(38)Broadland(8751)Brookings(22002)Bruce(204)Bryant(217)Buffalo(1762)Buffalo Gap(1758)Burbank(125)Burke(1765)Bushnell(1750)Cactus Flats(1750)Calico(3501)Camp Crook(1750)Campbell(1750)Canistota(1986)Canova(1759)Canton(6470)Carlock(3500)Carter(3477)Castle Rock(1750)Castlewood(2132)Cavour(1754)Cedarbutte(1750)Center(3500)Center Point(1750)Centerville(3994)Central City(7002)Chalk Butte(1750)Chamberlain(72)Chancellor(172)Cherry Creek(1267)Chester(1984)Cheyenne River Reservation(1649)Claire City(1794)Claremont(1758)Clark(2380)Clayton(1750)Clear Lake(602)Colman(3835)Colome(19)Colton(2200)Como(3500)Conde(1756)Corona(1862)Corsica(1778)Creighton(1752)Cresbard(1754)Crooks(2083)Crow Creek(3500)Custer(117)Dakota Dunes(12338)Danforth(1750)Davis(72)De Smet(2279)Deadwood(3578)Deerfield(1740)Dell Rapids(3025)Dempster(1750)Doland(1765)Eagle Butte(72)Eden(67)Edgemont(22)Edna(1750)Egan(81)Elk Point(4196)Elkton(2069)Ellsworth Afb(1883)Elm Lake(1750)Elm Springs(1616)Emery(18)Erwin(68)Estelline(455)Ethan(1770)Eureka(23)Fairview(29)Faith(18)Faulkton(28)Firesteel(1750)Flandreau(4587)Florence(1942)Flyger(1750)Folsom(1750)Forest City(3500)Fort Pierre(1837)Fort Thompson(27)Foster(1750)Frederick(20)Freeman(2351)Garden City(41)Garretson(692)Gary(2002)Gayville(91)Gettysburg(23)Glen(1750)Glenham(1753)Goodwin(66)Greenfield(8754)Greenwood(1733)Gregory(35)Grenville(1744)Groton(1789)Hammer(1750)Harrington(1750)Harrisburg(613)Harrold(1765)Hartford(2855)Hayes(1752)Hayti(1763)Headlee Ranch(1533)Hecla(1763)Heppner(1751)Hermosa(47)Herreid(1763)Hetlandxx(18)Hidden Timber(3490)Highmore(1779)Hiles(3499)Hill City(41)Hilland(1750)Hillhead(1750)Hisega(3499)Holmquist(3480)Hosmer(3511)Hot Springs(123)Houghton(1752)Houston(1751)Hoven(1760)Howard(30)Hudson(1874)Humboldt(2063)Hurley(151)Huron(377)Ipswich(40)Irene(1943)Janesville(1750)Janousek(1750)Jefferson(2109)Johnsonville(1750)Jolly Acres(36726)Junius(10502)Kadoka(1725)Kary(1750)Kasper(5251)Kenel(3500)Keystone(1767)Kimball(1779)Kingsbury(1750)Kyle(1822)Lake Andes(5290)Lake Madison(3451)Lake Norden(18)Lake Preston(3518)Langford(1758)Lead(99)Lebanon(1752)Lemmon(35)Lennox(2618)Leola(1761)Lesterville(1880)Letcher(1768)Longlake(1751)Lower Brule(1776)Lowry(1750)Madison(2582)Madsen Beach(1750)Manderson(31)Marion(2148)Martin(47)Marty(18)Mc Intosh(1752)Mcclure(1750)Mccook Lake(55)Meckling(64)Mellette(1759)Menno(2066)Milbank(5350)Miller(36)Mission(109)Mission Hill(154)Mitchell(543)Mobridge(103)Monroe(33)Montrose(278)Morristown(1751)Mount Vernon(1774)Murdo(16)N Sioux City(1183)New Underwood(1771)Newell(31)North Sioux City(88)Nunda(1804)Oelrichs(1755)Oglala(52)Oldham(113)Olivet(71)Onaka(1754)Onida(19)Oral(1753)Orient(1753)Parker(2113)Parkston(46)Parmelee(19)Peever(1771)Philip(19)Piedmont(69)Pierre(1351)Pine Ridge(151)Plankinton(1771)Platte(43)Pollock(1754)Porcupine(52)Pukwana(1763)Ramona(165)Randolph(1750)Rapid City(4331)Redfield(7080)Ree Heights(1755)Renner(270)Robey(1750)Rosebud(1818)Rosholt(1763)Running Water(1751)Rutland(43)Saint Francis(38)Salem(725)Scotland(2172)Seneca(1753)Sherman(67)Shindler(7012)Sinai(30)Sioux Falls(134751)Siouxfalls(21)Sisseton(112)South Shore(1757)Spearfish(12633)Spencer(1756)Spottwood(1750)Springfield(416)Stickney(16)Stockholm(1753)Sturgis(271)Summerset(16)Summit(1767)Tabor(268)Tea(885)Timber Lake(1222)Tolstoy(1752)Trent(92)Tripp(1768)Turton(1751)Tyndall(527)Utica(110)Valley Spgs(297)Valley Springs(37)Veblen(16)Vermillion(2759)Viborg(432)Volga(4245)Volin(154)Wagner(83)Wakonda(3589)Wall(26)Wanblee(27)Watertown(7438)Waubay(39)Webster(64)Wentworth(384)Wessington Springs(1782)White(22)White Lake(17)White River(30)Whitewood(3531)Winfred(1826)Winner(91)Witten(1751)Wolsey(3523)Woonsocket(1776)Worthing(236)Wounded Knee(17)Yankton(19472)

Historical Landmarks :

Mount Rushmore National Memorial

Minuteman Missile National Historic Site

Wounded Knee Battlefield

Vanderbilt Archeological Site, Molstad Village, Mitchell Site, Fort Thompson Mounds,, Battle Mountain Sanitarium, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers, Arzberger Site, Bear Butte

Tourist Destinations :

Spearfish Canyon

National Music Museum

Wind Cave National Park

Pettigrew Home and Museum, Badlands National Park, Homestake Gold Mine,  Custer State Park, Crazy Horse Memorial, Old Courthouse Museum, Mammoth Site, Butterfly House & Marine Cove

Means of Transportation : Rail, Taxi, Airport, Bus, Ferries

Notable Personalities : January Jones (Actress), Brock Lesnar (Athlete), Mike Miller (Basketball Player), Adam Vinatieri (Football Player), Tom Brokaw (News Anchor), Becky Hammon (Coach), Sitting Bull (Warrior), Mary Hart (Host), Ernest Lawrence (Scientist), Crazy Horse (Warrior), Hubert H. Humphrey (U.S. Vice President), Gary Owens (Voice ACtor), Mamie Van Doren (Actress)


South Dakota is a U.S. state located in the Midwestern region. The name was inspired by the Lakota and Dakota Sioux Native American Tribes. They were comprised of a significant portion of the population and they likewise dominated the entire territory according to history. In terms of size, South Dakota is the 17th largest of all the U.S. states. However, it is the 5th least populous.

South Dakota has become an independent state on November 2, 1889, after being a part of the southern portion of the Dakota Territory. It became an independent state at the same time as North Dakota. Pierre is the capital city of Dakota and Sioux Falls is the largest city. For thousands of years, humans have inhabited the area. In the 19th century, Sioux has become dominant and in the late 19th century, the European-American settlement flourished following a gold rush in the Black Hills. Also, the construction of railroads from the east also gave way for the boom in the settlement.

When it comes to ecology, the vast part of South Dakota is dominated by grassland biomes. Even if grasses and crops cover the vast area of the region, deciduous trees like cottonwoods, elms and willows can commonly be found near rivers. South Dakota has four distinct seasons due to its continental climate. These range from cold and dry winters, to hot and semi-humid summers. The summers in South Dakota bring thunderstorms that may become severe at times. The eastern part of the state is most often regarded as part of the Tornado Alley.

Each year, the state of South Dakota experiences 30 tornadoes per year. During winter, severe weather such as ice storms and blizzards occur. The common language in South Dakota is English, as a result of the legislature passing a law in 1995, making English as the state’s common language. In addition, some locals can also speak German, Lakota or Dakota, and Spanish.

There are different religions in South Dakota led by Christian with 86 percent. Protestant is at 54 percent, while Roman Catholic is at 25 percent. Like other states, South Dakota also has the same power separation. It has three branches; executive, legislative and judicial. The government structure can be found in the Constitution of South Dakota, which is also the highest law in the state. It may be amended through the majority of voters coming from both legislative houses, or through a voter initiative.

Interesting Facts About South Dakota

  • Did you know that the original design of Mount Rushmore National Memorial once included U.S. Presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt having sculpted their figures from head to waist? However, sculptor Gutzon Borglum died before he even completed his work. He began working on the monument in 1927, but he died in 1941. On top of that, the Congress had cut off funding due to the country’s dilemma with World War 1.
  • A military expedition in 1874 leading to the Black Hills, which were owned by Lakota, confirmed that there was the existence of gold. The expedition was led by General George Armstrong Custer. The area has been swarmed by thousands of miners, even though it violated the 1868 Treaty of Fort Laramie. The Treaty guaranteed that the Sioux had the rights to their sacred land where they founded the Great Sioux Reservation. As a result of this, the Black Hills War was triggered in 1876.
  • The members of the American Indian Movement subjugated a trading post at Wounded Knee on February 27, 1973. It was to protest the corruption within the Tribal Council of Oglala Lakota and the Bureau of Indian Affairs. It was forever known as the Siege of Wounded Knee. The siege lasted for 71 days and resulted in the deaths of two Indians after the exchange of gunfire that went on every day between the members of the AIM and the federal officers.
  • “The Mount Rushmore State” is South Dakota’s official nickname.
  • The state bird of South Dakota is the ring-necked pheasant.
  • The state flower of South Dakota is the American Pasque flower.
  • South Dakota’s state tree is the Black Hills spruce
  • The state motto is “Under God, the people rule.”
  • The slogan of the state is “Great Faces. Great Places.”
  • The state song is “Hail, South Dakota!”