125th Statehood
adj - 1. pertaining to or marking a period of 125 years
noun - 2. a 125th anniversary
3. a celebration marking such an anniversary



Join the Wagon Train

Download the Wagon Train Route Map & Itinerary (.pdf)

Download the Wagon Train Application (.pdf)



All Invited for Wagon Train Arrival at State Capitol;
Special Guest Will Be ND Governor Jack Dalrymple

Governor Dennis Daugaard and North Dakota Governor Jack Dalyrymple will greet the South Dakota 125th Anniversary of Statehood Wagon Train as it arrives at the State Capitol in Pierre around 11:00 a.m., Saturday, September 20.

The public is welcome to attend and visit with the wagon train travelers and the horse riders who made the 258 mile journey from the Territorial capital of Yankton to the State capital of Pierre in 17 days.

Governor Daugaard said, “We hope children and young people will come to see the wagon trains and learn about how people traveled and lived in the 1800s.”

A brief ceremony is scheduled to begin on the front steps of the Capitol around 11:30 a.m. Governor Daugaard will present North Dakota Governor Dalrymple a special set of flags from the two states that were flown over the replica of the Dakota Territory Capitol in Yankton earlier this month and then traveled with the wagon train to Pierre for the occasion.

The Mount Rushmore Mascots will also be on the capitol grounds.

Capitol Avenue in front of the Capitol building will be closed for the wagon train’s arrival. Ree Street and Nicollet Avenue will remain open. People are urged to use Broadway Avenue to approach the Capitol and park in the north parking lot. Personal lawn chairs are welcome.


Historic Wagon Train Route Finalized

Pierre, S.D. - The route is set for the historic wagon train that will celebrate South Dakota’s 125th anniversary of statehood.   The wagon train will start in Yankton, home of the Dakota Territory Capital, on September 3 and end at the State Capitol in Pierre on September 20.

Wagon train organizer Gerald Kessler of Fort Pierre has participated in over ninety wagon trains.  He said, “Traveling in a wagon train for 15-17 miles a day is hard work, but it’s also a lot of fun making new friends on the ride and along the route.” 

The route includes stops in 13 towns and several pastures as the wagon train makes its way on roads and cross country.  

Each evening along the way, local landowners and historians will present a history of that local area.  Communities and civic groups will be sponsoring evening meals and events so local people and students can see the wagon train up close and visit with wagon train participants.

The wagon train is being sponsored by the South Dakota Draft Horse and Mule Association. The cost is $125 per participant who can then ride any or all of the 17 days of the journey.  The wagon train will supply a wagon master, outriders, toilets, water and buses to move vehicles each evening.   The participants must supply their own equipment, animals, food, livestock feed and other traveling necessities.  All fees and donations will be used to defray the costs of the wagon train.