South Dakota Flag Information

The official state flag of South Dakota is sky blue with a slight variation of the state seal in the center.

South Dakota Seal

The seal of South Dakota features a colorful, picturesque scene including a farmer plowing his fields with two horses pulling the plow and a steamboat sailing on the Missouri River. A plume of steam is flowing from the boat, and a stream of smoke is coming from a smokestack of a smelt furnace on the riverbanks. The furnace represents mining, which people often did and still do in South Dakota. The seal in general is a symbol of life in South Dakota, representing the state’s natural resources, commerce and industry.

The seal contains a banner with the motto "Under God the People Rule" positioned at the top of the picture. The outermost portion of the seal contains the words "State of South Dakota," "Great Seal" and "1889," the year of statehood. The seal was adopted four years before South Dakota was added to the union, which is also the case with several other states.

South Dakota Flag

South Dakota Flag

On the South Dakota flag, the seal is featured in white with a navy blue outline, and the outermost design is a gold sun. Around the seal the flag is printed with the title "South Dakota" and the nickname "The Mount Rushmore State." Mount Rushmore National Park is a huge tourist attraction, drawing thousands of people to South Dakota each year. The massive structure pays tribute to George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt. Near the viewing area, flags from all 50 states fly overhead.

The official pledge of the South Dakota flag is "I pledge loyalty and support to the flag and state of South Dakota, land of sunshine, land of infinite variety." It should not be recited before the Pledge of Allegiance or replace the Pledge.

Interesting Facts about South Dakota

  • In the "Great NAVA Survey of 2001," South Dakota’s flag finished 68th, followed by Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, and Georgia.
  • South Dakota is the top producer of honey in the nation, and in 1978, the honeybee became its state insect.
  • Six of the Little House on the Prairie books are set in De Smet, and the Laura Ingalls Wilder Memorial Society headquarters is in the same town.


Flags of the Fifty States and their Incredible Histories: The Complete Guide to America's Most Powerful Symbols by Randy Howe 2002.

Copyright (c) 2007 Mandy Barberio. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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