South Dakota, the 17th largest state, is located in the Midwestern region of the United States. Its boundaries are North Dakota in the north, Iowa and Minnesota in the east, Nebraska in the south, and Wyoming and Montana to the west. The capital of South Dakota is Pierre while the city of Sioux Falls is the largest.
South Dakota has many rivers and lakes. Major South Dakota rivers are the Cheyenne, James, Big Sioux, Missouri, and White Rivers, wherein the Missouri is the largest and longest river. These rivers run through a fertile land that sustains the state’s agricultural economy. The lifestyle is mostly rural though South Dakota has sought to also have a strong industrial, service, and tourism sectors.
The state is nicknamed The Mount Rushmore State. The Mount Rushmore National Memorial in the Black Hills was established in 1925. The sculptor Gutzon Borglum carved into the mountainside giant heads of four U.S. Presidents – George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. The National Park Service manages this memorial which attracts around two million tourists annually.
Other sites under the National Park Service that are equally interesting are the Wind Cave National Park, the Badlands National Park, the Jewel Cave National Monument, the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail, the Minuteman Missile Historic Site, and the Missouri National Recreational River.
South Dakota also has prehistoric sites. One of these is in Hot Springs where 49 Columbian Mammoths were found. This prehistoric animal that weighed up to 10 tons and measures up to 14’ tall used to roam the North American landscape during the Pleistocene era.