“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Houghton in Brown County, South Dakota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)

Ralph Herseth

Twenty-First Governor

Ralph Herseth Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Ruth VanSteenwyk, May 2, 2017
1. Ralph Herseth Marker
Inscription.   Ralph Herseth, 1909 - 1969, was born on a ranch near Houghten and grew to manhood here. He graduated from Columbia High School and attended North Dakota State College. As a farmer - rancher, he raised wheat, corn, and Aberdeen Angus cattle and liked to be regarded as a typical second-generation son of the soil. He also operated a farm implement business in Hecla. In 1937 he married his high school sweetheart Lorna Buntrock of Columbia, she served as South Dakota's Secretary of State 1972 - 1978. They had three children: Karen, Connie, and Lars.

Ralph served as officer or director of the Northern Electric Cooperative, the James Valley Telephone Cooperative, the Houghton Elevator, and many civic betterment organizations of Brown County. He was a Life-long member of Trinity Lutheran Church.

As State Senator in 1951 - 52 and 1955 - 56, his abilities brought him into the political limelight. In 1958 he was elected Governor, becoming only the third Democratic Governor in state history. His governorship was marked by compassion and honesty, firmness and aggressive purpose. The first state-wide teachers' retirement benefit
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program was established under his leadership. This roadside park is a fitting place to honor a distinguished citizen who merited state and national recognition.
Erected 1966. (Marker Number 424.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Government & Politics. In addition, it is included in the South Dakota State Historical Society Markers series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1909.
Location. 45° 45.764′ N, 98° 12.657′ W. Marker is in Houghton, South Dakota, in Brown County. Marker is at the intersection of 112th Street (State Highway 10) and 3rd Street, on the right when traveling east on 112th Street. Marker is in a city park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Houghton SD 57449, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Civilian Conservation Corps Camp (approx. 2.2 miles away); Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge (approx. 2.2 miles away); Waterfowl (approx. 5.2 miles away); a different marker also named Sand Lake National Wildlife Refuge (approx. 5.2 miles away); Songbirds (approx. 5.2 miles away); Sand Lake's Observation Tower (approx. 5.3 miles away); The View from the Top (approx. 5.3 miles away); Father Alexandra Ravoux (approx. 6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Houghton.
Ralph Herseth Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Ruth VanSteenwyk, May 2, 2017
2. Ralph Herseth Marker
Credits. This page was last revised on September 4, 2021. It was originally submitted on January 14, 2018, by Ruth VanSteenwyk of Aberdeen, South Dakota. This page has been viewed 263 times since then and 4 times this year. Last updated on September 3, 2021, by Ruth VanSteenwyk of Aberdeen, South Dakota. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 14, 2018, by Ruth VanSteenwyk of Aberdeen, South Dakota. • Mark Hilton was the editor who published this page.

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Feb. 25, 2024