As opposed to the renowned memorials and statuary art which stand on the grounds of the State Capitol, many people don't realize the artistic treasures in the form of bronze and other forms of sculpture which reside within the Capitol itself.


Foremost among the many works is the Beadle Statue. This marble statue in the eastern hallway of the second floor bears the likeness of General William H. H. Beadle.  Beadle is memorialized in the Capitol for his many noteworthy accomplishments for South Dakota.


In 1869 President Grant appointed him surveyor-general of Dakota Territory. His journeys through the territory and his previous frontier experience convinced him that school lands were a trust for future generations and should be sold at their appraised value and never for less than $10 an acre. This effort dominated his life. Having watched similar lands gobbled up for mere nothing by land sharks in other states, Beadle resolved that if it lay within his power, their acts should not be repeated in South Dakota.


He served as secretary of the 1877 commission to codify the territorial laws and as chairman of the judiciary committee in the territorial House. In 1879 he became superintendent of public instruction. Beadle drafted the school lands provision at the South Dakota constitutional convention of 1885.


When Congress accepted the state constitution in 1889, it was so impressed that similar provisions were required for North Dakota, Montana, Washington, Idaho, and Wyoming. This preserved 22 million acres for schools. He is truly worthy to be considered the father of school and public lands in this state for his efforts at ensuring the education of our state's future children by reserving a portion of every section for them.




As was written about General Beadle on Who's Who in South Dakota (1913):

He went on horseback and on foot from Yankton to Bismarck and from Sioux Falls to Deadwood; met the settlers face to face, called public meetings and addressed them in sod houses; urged them to elect men to the constitutional convention who would sustain and fight for his school land provision in it; and when the crucial hour arrived, Beadle won! All hail! Grand Old Man of the Dakotas! We will kiss the feet of your marble statue long after your remains lie silent in the dust!



In each corner alcove of the Rotunda are four bronze sculptures which were dedicated to the people of South Dakota in 1989, the year South Dakota celebrated its centennial. The sculptures were created by South Dakota artist Dale Lamphere of Sturgis, SD.





Wisdom, Courage, Integrity, and Vision were commissioned by the South Dakota Centennial Commission to commemorate the South Dakota Centennial, and designed to embody 4 aspects that all South Dakotans share.


A duplicate bust depicting the head of the Integrity statue resides in the Governor's Outer office




A bust of Peter Norbeck resides in the lobby behind the Senate. This image in the likeness of the former Governor of South Dakota was sculpted by none other than the man who carved a mountain, Gutzon Borglum.



The Sherrard plate has remained in the Capitol since 1912 when it was placed there by the school children of South Dakota and the Women's Christian Temperance Union in honor of Elizabeth Hazelton Sherrard, the founder of the South Dakota Children's Home.


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Other Art of the Capitol



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