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South Dakota Online Archives

Items marked with a * indicate that the resource pertains to South Dakota.

South Dakota State Library Online South Dakota Resources*

An online database provided by the South Dakota State Library aiding in research related to the state of South Dakota. This database contains regionally specific data sources, newspaper indexes, online publications, maps, and many more useful resources.

South Dakota Digital Archives*

South Dakota Digital Archives is an online archive containing photo collections, manuscript collections, and government documents since 1891. All of the documents are digitized, and the photo collection would serve as a great starting point for a project or classroom lesson.

South Dakota State Historical Society*

The South Dakota State Historical Society’s online digital archives contains numerous South Dakota newspapers dating back to 1880. Access is limited in some aspects to certain issues or days of the week.

South Dakota State University Manuscript Archives*

Manuscript collections come from a variety of sources. Collections range from rural life in South Dakota to papers of alumni. Much of the collection offers significant insight into South Dakota and the surrounding region. The primary focus of this collection is twentieth century rural South Dakota. Much of this information comes from papers, records, and published papers that have been acquired from personal papers, businesses and communities.

Northern State University Library Archives & Special Collections*

Northern State University’s Digital Collections contains digitized primary sources materials such as newspapers, photos, and oral histories pertaining to South Dakota in the 19th and 20th century. Paper topics range from issues regarding South Dakota water rights to the effect Russian-German immigrant had on the state in the 19th century. Much of this information comes from newspapers, photos and personal stories.

Association of South Dakota Museums*

The Association of South Dakota Museums website contains listings for all South Dakota Museums. Use this site to locate museum archives and resources across the state of South Dakota.

South Dakota Legends & Learning*

Created by the South Dakota Hall of Fame, South Dakota Legends & Learning is an online resource that educates users on famous South Dakotans. Students can read bios and listen and view various types of media, as well as play online games that further immerse them in their research and classroom experience. Teacher resources are also available, showing how to utilize the website within current education standards.

Hall Of Fame Inductees Online Archive*

South Dakota Hall of fame offers an online archive of biographies of individuals who have shaped the fabric and culture of South Dakota. The site offers a directory for users to utilize to search various notable South Dakotans.

Siouxland Heritage Museums*

Siouxland Heritage Museums offer access to the Pettigrew House & Museum, Old Courthouse Museum and Irene Hall Resource Center. A range of artifacts can be found through the online database or through their archives finding aid including primary documents, photos, and objects all related to local and regional Siouxland history, especially government related items for the area.

Center for Western Studies*

The Augustana Research Repository, .np3, Northern Plains Peoples & Places houses"500 substantive archival collections and maintains a library in excess of 36,000 volumes on the American West," They also offer access to art and artifact collections on the American West.

National Music Museum*

NMM's houses a collection of over 15,000 instruments some of which are included in their only database with more being added progressively.

Homestake Adams Research & Cultural Center Archival Collections*

The Homestake-Adams Research and Cultural Center is a repository for over 10,000 cubic feet of archival materials relevant to the history of the Black Hills of South Dakota. It houses the archival collections from the Homestake Mining Company, the Adams Museum, the Historic Adams House, and the Days of ’76 Museum. These wide-ranging collections represent the social, economic, and political history of the Black Hills area.

The HARCC includes an extensive research library, access to collections databases on two public computers, and an on-sight archivist to assist with research requests. For more information visit: or contact archivist Tia Stenson at or 605-722-4800.

United States Department of Agriculture 

USDA online finding aid brings together both primary and secondary sources from all over. Unique and rare materials are highlighted throughout the finding aid.