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Pierre, South Dakota
—  City  —
Location in Hughes County and the state of South Dakota
Coordinates: 44°22′5″N 100°20′11″W / 44.36806°N 100.33639°W / 44.36806; -100.33639
Country United States
State South Dakota
County Hughes
Founded 1880
Incorporated 1883[1]
Government
 - Mayor Laurie Gill
Area
 - Total 13.0 sq mi (33.7 km2)
 - Land 13.0 sq mi (33.7 km2)
 - Water 0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)  0.08%
Elevation 1,453 ft (442 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 13,876
 - Density 1,065.8/sq mi (411.5/km2)
Time zone Central (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) Central (UTC-5)
ZIP code 57501
Area code(s) 605
FIPS code 46-49600[2]
GNIS feature ID 1266887[3]
Website www.pierre.sd.gov

The city of Pierre (pronounced /ˈpɪər/, PEER[4]) is the capital of the U.S. state of South Dakota and the county seat of Hughes County.[5] The population was 13,876 at the 2000 census, making it the second least populous state capital after Montpelier, Vermont. Founded in 1880 on the Missouri River opposite Fort Pierre, Pierre has been South Dakota's capital since it gained statehood on November 11, 1889, having been chosen for its location in the geographic center of the state. Fort Pierre itself was named after Pierre Chouteau, Jr., an American fur trader of French-Canadian origin. It is also a major statewide transportation hub and is famous for its memorial hall.

Pierre is the principal city of the Pierre Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Hughes and Stanley counties.

Contents

Geography

Pierre is located at 44°22′5″N 100°20′11″W / 44.36806°N 100.33639°W / 44.36806; -100.33639 (44.367966, −100.336378) [6].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 13.0 square miles (33.7 km²), of which 13.0 square miles (33.7 km²) is land and 0.08% is water.

Pierre lies on rough river bluffs overlooking the Missouri River. Many of these bluffs are strewn with large boulders. It is a few miles away from Lake Oahe, one of the largest man made lakes in the world and a very popular fishing destination.

The climate in Pierre consists of cold, sometimes harsh, winters and very warm to hot summers. The average highs and lows are 28°F/3°F for January and 89°F/62°F in July. The warmest temperature ever recorded in Pierre was 117°F (47.2°C), set on July 15, 2006. The coldest recorded temperature was −35°F (−37.2°C) on February 9, 1994.

Monthly Normal and Record High and Low Temperatures
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Rec High °F (°C) 68 (20) 75 (23.4) 87 (30.5) 98 (36.6) 105 (40.5) 112 (44.4) 117 (47.2) 114 (45.5) 108 (42.2) 98 (36.6) 80 (26.6) 70 (21.1)
Norm High °F (°C) 28 (-2.2) 35 (1.6) 45 (7.2) 60 (15.5) 71 (21.6) 81 (27.2) 89 (31.6) 88 (31.1) 77 (25) 62 (16.6) 43 (6.1) 32 (0)
Norm Low °F (°C) 8 (-13.3) 14 (-10) 24 (-4.4) 35 (1.6) 46 (7.7) 56 (13.3) 62 (16.6) 60 (15.5) 49 (9.4) 37 (2.7) 23 (-5) 12 (-11.1)
Rec Low °F (°C) -33 (-36.1) -35 (-37.2) -19 (-28.3) 4 (-15.5) 22 (-5.5) 35 (1.6) 42 (5.5) 39 (3.8) 21 (-6.1) 4 (-15.5) -18 (-27.7) -31 (-35)
Precip in. (mm) 0.52 (13.2) 0.54 (13.7) 1.19 (30.2) 2.02 (51.3) 3.14 (79.7) 3.49 (88.6) 2.75 (69.8) 1.86 (47.2) 1.55 (39.4) 1.64 (41.6) 0.70 (17.8) 0.48 (12.2)
Source: Weather.com [1]

Demographics

The South Dakota State Capitol building stands near the Missouri River in downtown Pierre. The limestone and white marble building was begun in 1905. Pierre has been South Dakota's capital since statehood in 1889. Earlier capitals of Dakota Territory were Yankton, South Dakota, from 1861 to 1883 and Bismarck, North Dakota, from 1883 to 1889.
Monument in front of the Capitol
Inside the Capitol
Dome of the Capitol

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 13,876 people, 5,567 households, and 3,574 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,065.8 people per square mile (411.5/km²). There were 5,949 housing units at an average density of 457.0/sq mi (176.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 88.91% White, 0.20% African American, 8.56% Native American, 0.46% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.29% from other races, and 1.56% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 1.25% of the population.

There were 5,567 households, out of which 32.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 9.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.8% were non-families. 31.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35, and the average family size was 2.96.

In the city the population was spread out, with 27.2% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 28.6% from 25 to 44, 23.6% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $42,962, and the median income for a family was $52,144. Males had a median income of $32,969 versus $22,865 for females. The per capita income for the city was $20,462. About 5.5% of families and 7.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.9% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.

Transportation

Airlines serving Pierre Regional Airport provide non-stop flights to Denver, Watertown, and Brookings, with continuing service to Minneapolis-St. Paul from Watertown.

The nearest interstate highway is Interstate 90, which is about 34 miles south of Pierre via U.S. Highway 83. Pierre is one of only five state capitals not served by an interstate highway. Dover, Delaware; Jefferson City, Missouri; Carson City, Nevada; and Juneau, Alaska, are the other four state capitals with this distinction.

Media

AM Radio

FM Radio

Television

The Capital Journal is the local newspaper.

Notable natives

Trivia

  • Pierre is the only state capital to lie on a timezone demarcation line.
  • Pierre is the subject of a joke in the song "Capital," performed by the popular a cappella group Rockapella and composed by Sean Altman. The song lists every U.S. state capital except for Pierre; during the song's final fade-out, a voice can be heard exclaiming, "Pierre! Pierre! We forgot Pierre!"[7] A subsequent track on the album features the then-mayor of Pierre, Gary Drewes, chastising Rockapella for the omission (and their mispronunciation of the town's name).
  • In the 1990s, Pierre was known as Suicide City/Town for having a large cluster of suicides during that time.[8]

References

External links

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Simple English

Pierre, South Dakota
South Dakota State Capitol
Coordinates: 44°22′5″N 100°20′11″W / 44.36806°N 100.33639°W / 44.36806; -100.33639
Country United States
State South Dakota
County Hughes County
Founded 1880
Government
 - Mayor Dennis Eisnach
Area
 - Total 13.0 sq mi (33.7 km2)
 - Land 13.0 sq mi (33.7 km2)
Elevation 1,453 ft (442 m)
Population (2000)
 - Total 13,876
 Density 1,065.8/sq mi (411.5/km2)
Time zone Central (UTC-6)
 - Summer (DST) Central (UTC-5)
Website ci.pierre.sd.us

Pierre is the capital city of South Dakota, a state of the United States of America. As of the 2000 census, it had a population of 13,876. Pierre (pronounced "peer") is the county seat of Hughes County. Started in 1880 on the Missouri River across from Fort Pierre, Pierre has been the state capital since 1889.

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