South Dakota may be one of the least-populated states in the US, but that doesn’t make it one of the least interesting. In fact, it’s home to several major monuments which are world-famous, as well as wild and natural land which pulls in visitors and tourists year after year. Here’s our complete fact file on South Dakota to help you learn a little bit more about this state in the Midwest.
- South Dakota is famous for a sparse landscape, largely dominated by farmland, Lakeland and prairies. You’ll also find mountains and ranches across the state.
- Therefore, the state is well-known for its contributions to agriculture. However, the tourism trade here is actually booming, with around $2 billion entering the state through visitors each year.
- The state has the nickname ‘The Mount Rushmore State’ for a fairly obvious reason – it’s home to Mount Rushmore, the famous monument to several Presidents of the US.
- Mount Rushmore supposedly cost around $1 million to build in 1927, and it’s around 6,200 feet tall.
- Mount Rushmore is said to host up to two million tourists and visitors each year.
South Dakota’s State Flag
- South Dakota is also home to several national parks, including those out in the Badlands and at Wind Cave.
- You will also find parks and monuments to two very different sides on US history. Both the Crazy Horse Memorial and Custer State Park can be found here.
- Custer State Park, in fact, is home to a huge herd of bison, around 1,500 of which are roaming free.
- South Dakota is also home to a unique collection of fossils and bones – in that they have not been changed or moved since their initial discovery.
- While Mount Rushmore may be large, it’s thought that a long-building sculpture of Chief Crazy Horse may overshadow it once it finishes production. It’s been in the building since 1948.
- Famous people to hail from South Dakota include wrestler Brock Lesnar, Wizard of Oz author L Frank Baum, Native American chiefs Sitting Bull and Crazy Horse, actress Cheryl Ladd, and TV host Bob Barker.
- Mitchell, South Dakota, is home to a unique world oddity – a Corn Palace. What is a Corn Palace? It’s a huge venue adorned in corn and crop-based murals. It really is a sight to see!
- South Dakota is home to one of the world’s three largest caves. There are more than 180 miles to Jewel Cave in the Black Hills.
- Believe it or not, the South Dakota Governor’s Office once produced a campaign to convince residents to stay residing in South Dakota rather than colonise Mars! “Why die on Mars when you can live in South Dakota,” a slogan read.
- Outside of the Rockies, Harney Peak is the tallest point in the Eastern US. It’s around 2,208m above water.
- Ever heard of Mashed Potato Wrestling? Now you have. The world’s epicentre of the sport is in Clark, South Dakota – a huge potato importer!
Do you know any interesting or fun facts about South Dakota? Share them with us in the comments section below!