Kickin’ Country Small Town of the Day ‘Canton, SD’
Today’s Kickin’ Country Small Town of the Day is Canton, SD. I first ‘heard of Canton,’ from my Grandma Minnie. I remember her saying she went to school/college at Canton. Canton Normal School is what she called it. I believe the school has now been converted into apartments.
Canton is a relatively ‘large’ Small Town of the Day. They boast a population of over 3000. It’s another South Dakota City that is situated next to the Big Sioux River. One of the most beautiful spots on the earth Newton Hills State Park. According to Wikpedia,
Tales of buried gold and hideaways for horse thieves and robbers have been passed on through the years. A small unit of the United States Cavalry was chased into the forest by a group of Lakota warriors. Legend holds that the soldiers had a supply of gold which they buried in the park before they were killed by the Native Americans. Several searches have been made to locate the site of the battle and the gold, but so far nothing has been found. Frank and Jesse James used the forests of what is now the park as a temporary hideout after their famous robbery of a bank in Northfield, Minnesota The robbery in Northfield was not successful and after this robbery and a manhunt, only Frank and Jesse James were left alive and uncaptured.
Just think, if you’ve hung a tree stand and hunted deer, or hiked the trails of Newton Hills you were in the same place Jessie James made camp and probably stirred a pot of baked beans.
Recently, heavy rains have caused havoc south of Newton Hills (Thanks Kristi) the water washed out part of the road south of Newton Hills. You can get from Canton to Newton Hills and Lake Lakota just fine.so you might have to re-route to get there. If Jessie rode through the area today, I wonder if he’d try to jump his horse across it.
This next part, you can’t make up. According to the history books, The residents named the community Canton, believing the location to be the exact opposite of Canton, China. I’d love to give that city a call sometime and see how they pronounce the Chinese version of Canton as opposed to the South Dakota dialect. I imagine it’s quite different.
You might say Canton got it’s name from a couple guys with a ‘globe’ and a curious sense between the two of them. (See Canton right below Guangzhou)
Those with a South Dakota 44 license plate know Canton quite well. It’s the county seat to Lincoln County and when it’s time to get your vehicle licensed, you’re off and running down I-29 or Highway 11. I live on the SE part of Sioux Falls, and you can see the traffic streaming up from Canton most mornings for work. (most of that traffic now is rerouted on 57thand 26th Streets and Sycamore Avenue due to construction.
The Canton Car Show, 4-H Achievement Days and other summertime get togethers are big happenings in Canton.
We’re going to leave the rest of this story as an open forum. Where’s a good spot for coffee or a meal? Best Bar? What can you add to ‘the story of Canton?’ Let us know on our Facebook, or hit the ‘like’ button below and leave a comment there.
People have been asking about the Downhill Ski Area in Canton. That’s quite a story. Thanks for helping find this Kristi!-From Wikpedia
.A young man by the named Ludwig Holter from Norway, gave a skiing exhibition to a group of Canton Students in 1911. This exhibition began the quest to clear the hill and build a scaffold and jump in 1912. From that platform at the peak of the hill to a landing place was drop of 275 feet. Skiers could cover a distance of one eighth of a mile at up to 100 miles per hour. Soon tournaments were held at about two-year intervals. On February 11 and 12, 1925, a National Tournament was held and Canton hosted over 5,000 fans. The Sioux Valley Ski Club was organized that year. World renowned singer, Eric Bye, gave the trophy to the Sioux Valley Club. Many notables were present that day including a member of the Olympic team, national champions, and the international winner and the winner of the world distance title. Many tournaments were held at the site. The largest on record was the1932 National tournament when 15,000-20,000 people attended. Tournaments declined in the 1930s. Cost increases and slowing attendance prompted the last Central U.S. tournament in 1936. The last national event was in 1957. Snow was scarce so it was truck in from Spirit Lake and Lake Okoboji, Iowa. By the time the snow was in place, it had turned into slush. Winds changed and brought bitter temperatures causing the slush to freeze. The tournament had to be cancelled. The ski hill is all that remains of the tournament site.
Canton, SD! Our Kickin’ Country Small Town of the Day.