The South Dakota State Historical Society museum aims to educate the public about South Dakota’s heritage.
The largest exhibit is divided into three galleries looking at different eras of South Dakota’s history. The Oyate Tawicoh’an is about the earliest residents of South Dakota: the Dakota, Nakota, and Lakota peoples. Next is the Proving Up gallery that takes visitors from the Verendrye plate in 1743 and traces the explorers, miners, trappers, and settlers that called South Dakota home until statehood in 1904. The third installment to the South Dakota experience recognizes the railroad and cars that helped the state to thrive at the beginning of the 20th century while also remembering the Great Depression that caused many people to struggle.
The Hogan Gallery shows visitors the development of the Cold War missile fields in South Dakota. This exhibit features different ways for visitors to interact with history by being able to build your own fallout shelter, play missile command, watch missilier training videos and more!
The last gallery overlooks the Capitol and the Missouri river. Here is an exhibit about the women’s right to vote focused primarily on the period from 1848 to 1920 that connects South Dakota’s history to the larger story of the United States.