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Mitchell, South Dakota
—  City  —
Corn Palace in Mitchell
Location in Davison County and the state of South Dakota
Coordinates: 43°42′50″N 98°1′35″W / 43.71389°N 98.02639°W / 43.71389; -98.02639
Country United States
State South Dakota
County Davison
 - Mayor Lou Sebert
 - Total 10.9 sq mi (28.2 km2)
 - Land 9.9 sq mi (25.6 km2)
 - Water 1 sq mi (2.6 km2)
Elevation 1,312 ft (400 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 14,558
 - Density 1,335.6/sq mi (516.2/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 57301
Area code(s) 605
FIPS code 46-43100 [1]
GNIS feature ID 1256500 [2]

Mitchell is a city in and the county seat of Davison County, South Dakota, United States.[3] The population was 14,558 at the 2000 census. Mitchell was incorporated in 1881. It was named for Milwaukee banker Alexander Mitchell, President of the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad (Milwaukee Road).

Mitchell is the principal city of the Mitchell Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Davison and Hanson counties.



Mitchell is located at 43°42′50″N 98°1′35″W / 43.71389°N 98.02639°W / 43.71389; -98.02639 (43.713896, -98.026282),[4] on the James River.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 10.9 square miles (28.2 km²), of which, 9.9 square miles (25.6 km²) of it is land and 1.0 square miles (2.6 km²) of it (9.29%) is water.

Mitchell has been assigned the ZIP code 57301 and the FIPS place code 43100.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 14,558 people, 6,121 households, and 3,599 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,475.7 people per square mile (569.5/km²). There were 6,555 housing units at an average density of 664.4/sq mi (256.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.63% White, 0.32% African American, 2.40% Native American, 0.45% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.29% from other races, and 0.87% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.77% of the population.

There were 6,121 households out of which 28.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.6% were married couples living together, 9.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.2% were non-families. 34.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.27 and the average family size was 2.95.

In the city the population was spread out with 24.1% under the age of 18, 13.4% from 18 to 24, 25.3% from 25 to 44, 19.6% from 45 to 64, and 17.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 91.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,308, and the median income for a family was $43,095. Males had a median income of $30,881 versus $20,794 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,888. About 8.8% of families and 12.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.7% of those under age 18 and 10.9% of those age 65 or over.

The campus of Dakota Wesleyan University is located in southwest Mitchell.

Street view of the Corn Palace


Mitchell is home of the Corn Palace. The Corn Palace is decorated with several colors of dried corn and grains creating murals. The theme of the external murals is changed yearly at fall harvest; internal murals are changed approximately every ten years. The building itself is used for several purposes including a basketball arena, the local high school prom, trade shows, staged entertainment, and the Shriner's Circus.

Mitchell is the home to the Dakota Discovery Museum, whose mission is the history of the prairie and the people who settled it. Covering a time period from 1600 when the Native Americans were undiscovered to 1939 at the end of the Great Depression. The museum is a caliber not often found in small mid-western towns, and holds one of the most complete and pristine collections of American Indian quill and bead-works. Dakota Discovery Museum also features famous artists such as Harvey Dunn, James Earle Fraser, Charles Hargens and Oscar Howe. In the village area behind the main building are four authentic historical buildings including an 1885 one-room school house and the fully furnished 1886 Victorian-Italianate home of the co-founder of the Corn Palace, Louis Beckwith. Two new features of the museum are Discovery Land, a hands-on activity area for children ages 5 to 10, and the Heritage Gardens Project bringing indigenous plants to the gardens surrounding the museum and historical buildings.

Mitchell is home to the Mitchell Prehistoric Indian Village, an archaeological site where scientists are excavating a Native American village, believed to have been occupied by ancestors of the present Mandan residing in North Dakota, that is buried near Lake Mitchell. The excavation site is unique in that it is enclosed by an Archeodome, a climate-controlled building built over the excavation, that allows scientists to continue their excavation year round.

The Mitchell area is home to several state champion trees: Black Cherry, Black Locust, Siberian Elm, and Tulip Tree.[5]


The South Dakota Gold was a professional basketball club that competed in the International Basketball Association in the 2000-01 season.

Notable Natives

2004 - Lewis & Clark


External links



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