Bookmark and Share


Yankton’s roots how we got our start Yankton, which in the Sioux Indian language means “End Village,” was a virtually treeless campsite on the banks of the Missouri River in 1859. Two years later it became the capital of the immense new Dakota Territory, and with it, a transformation into a rollicking river port. Lewis & Clark It all started when Lewis & Clark brought their expedition to Yankton in 1804. They met with the indigenous Sioux Tribe at Calumet Bluff, now near Gavins Point Dam. Gifts were exchanged, bonds were formed, and the Corps of Discovery continued west with it’s journey. mother city of the dakotas Yankton was established as the first capital of the Dakota Territory, and held that title for 22 years. (Look for the replica of the capital building in Riverside Park.) People were drawn to our river access and progressive way of life. We are home to South Dakota’s first: Bank | newspaper | High School | College | Medical Clinic | Bridge Across the Missouri River Yankton has always been a place of opportunity, vision and entrepreneurialism! The wild west 6 | Yankton Visitors Guide | www.VisitYanktonSD.com In 1876, former gunslinger Wild Bill Hickok, at that point a sheriff, was gunned down in a saloon in Deadwood. His accused killer, Jack McCall, was brought to Yankton for trial. McCall was convicted of the murder and publicly hanged in Yankton at age 24. His body is buried in a newly marked grave in Yankton.