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

Brookings County

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Brookings County Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Ruth VanSteenwyk, August 5, 2018
1. Brookings County Marker
Inscription.  Home of roving Indians until 1862. The exploring party of Nicollet, scientist, and Fremont, ‘Pathfinder of the West,’ visited Oakwood Lakes July 1838, leaving the first reliable record. The region East of the Big Sioux was ceded by the Santee Sioux in 1851 that to the west by the Yankton Sioux in 1858. A breastwork was made at Oakwood Lakes in 1859 and occupied again in 1862-63. In 1857 Nobles Wagon Road was built through the county, crossing the Big Sioux over an improved ford. A settlement, Medary, existed there 1857-58 when the Sioux forced its abandonment. Permanent settlement was begun nearby in 1869 by 10 Norwegians with Medary the county seat 1871-79. Another such colony of 31 settled at Lake Hendricks in July 1873. Population increased rapidly after 1877, numbering 4,965 in 1880, and 10,132 in 1890.

Brookings County was created in 1862 and named for Wilmont W. Brookings (1830-1905), prominent pioneer judge and legislator. Until 1873 it included parts of Moody, Lake and Kingsbury Counties. It was organized on July 3rd, 1871 in Martin N. Trygstand’s cabin, 4 miles NW of Medary. Most towns began in 1879 when the Northwestern
Brookings County Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Ruth VanSteenwyk, August 5, 2018
2. Brookings County Marker
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R.R. crossed the county, and others when roads pushed North in 1884. Medary, Oakwood and Fountain became ghost towns and 147 Brookings the county seat. In 1881 State College was established in Brookings, opening its doors in 1884. Brookings County welcomes you to its 791 square miles of prosperous farms, beautiful lakes and happy homes.
Erected 1957 by Brookings County Commissioners. (Marker Number 553.)
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Native AmericansSettlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the South Dakota State Historical Society Markers series list. A significant historical month for this entry is July 1838.
Location. 44° 11.724′ N, 96° 47.368′ W. Marker is near Brookings, South Dakota, in Brookings County. Marker is at the intersection of 471st Avenue and 220th Street, on the right when traveling north on 471st Avenue. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Brookings SD 57006, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Moody County (here, next to this marker); Medary (approx. one mile away); First Convention in Brookings County (approx. one mile away); Medary Townsite (approx. one mile away); Hagensick's Resort (approx. 3.6 miles away); Lake Campbell Lutheran Church
Brookings County Marker image. Click for full size.
August 15, 2021
3. Brookings County Marker
(approx. 4.9 miles away); Downtown (approx. 7.8 miles away); Brookings County South Dakota Veterans Memorial (approx. 7.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Brookings.
More about this marker. This is the other side of marker #121184 (Moody County).
Credits. This page was last revised on September 8, 2021. It was originally submitted on August 6, 2018, by Ruth VanSteenwyk of Aberdeen, South Dakota. This page has been viewed 165 times since then and 6 times this year. Last updated on September 7, 2021. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on August 6, 2018, by Ruth VanSteenwyk of Aberdeen, South Dakota.   3. submitted on August 21, 2021. • J. Makali Bruton was the editor who published this page.

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Feb. 1, 2023