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Near Parker in Turner County, South Dakota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

Turner County Poor Farm

 
 
Turner County Poor Farm Marker image. Click for full size.
October 9, 2021
1. Turner County Poor Farm Marker
Inscription.  Before Social Security, old age assistance, and other social safety nets, poor farms throughout the United States provided a place for those suffering through desperate times. The Turner County Poor Farm housed primarily aged and disabled men, although there were several single indigent women and, during the height of the Great Depression, families with small children.

In 1897, the County Commissioners paid $13 an acre for two quarter-sections of land. A large two-story wood-frame house was built at a cost of $2,295, and the rest of the 160 acres was farmed. The first lodgers moved in on April 4, 1899. During the 1930’s, the house accommodated nearly twenty lodgers as well as the Superintendent and his family. The farm had a garden, barns, and other outbuildings for chickens, hogs, and dairy cattle.

Peter Meyer was the first superintendent, hired in 1899 at an annual salary of $600. Harvey and Bertha Nelson were the last superintendents. Harvey Nelson managed farm operations while Bertha oversaw cooking, food preservation, and laundry for her family and all the residents. After the farm closed in 1948, funds from the sale
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of the land were used for a county nursing home, and the buildings later demolished.
 
Erected 2019 by the State of South Dakota. (Marker Number 726.)
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AgricultureCharity & Public Work. In addition, it is included in the South Dakota State Historical Society Markers series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1897.
 
Location. 43° 20.991′ N, 97° 12.075′ W. Marker is near Parker, South Dakota, in Turner County. Marker is on 450th Avenue, 0.4 miles north of 279th Street, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Parker SD 57053, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 7 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. J.W. "Father" Turner (approx. 4.4 miles away); Turner County, South Dakota Veterans Memorial (approx. 4.4 miles away); First School House in Turner County (approx. 9.6 miles away); First General Store in Turner County (approx. 9.6 miles away); Swan Lake (approx. 10 miles away); Our Congregations (approx. 11.2 miles away); Pumpkin Center (approx. 14˝ miles away).
 
Turner County Poor Farm Marker image. Click for full size.
October 9, 2021
2. Turner County Poor Farm Marker
Turner County Poor Farm Marker, from the north image. Click for full size.
October 9, 2021
3. Turner County Poor Farm Marker, from the north
Turner County Poor Farm Marker, from the south image. Click for full size.
October 9, 2021
4. Turner County Poor Farm Marker, from the south
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 11, 2021. It was originally submitted on October 10, 2021. This page has been viewed 300 times since then and 68 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on October 10, 2021. • Mark Hilton was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 20, 2024