St. Peter Lutheran Church is in a farm area in Jackson County, South Dakota. I haven’t had much luck finding more about its history. I have seen an older photo and it looks like some slight alterations have been made on the front of the building since that one was taken. There’s a cemetery on-site and some folks were mowing the grounds when I stopped by, so it’s safe to say the church is still in use today.
A large number of homesteaders from Norway began to settle in this quiet part of South Dakota in the early 1900s. As the sign indicates, Golden Valley Norwegian Lutheran Church was built in 1921. It’s a frame building with a gabled roof in the “rural Gothic” style seen in some of the other churches in the area. There’s a small cemetery to the left of the church and an outhouse to the right. The church was added to the National Register of Historic Places about 30 years ago and is now privately owned.
Welsh Presbyterian Church is in Plana, South Dakota. I stopped by here just before sunset as a strong thunderstorm was heading in, so the the light was excellent. The church was built in 1887 by Welsh immigrants. A sign on the front of the building says that it closed in 1941 and in 1995 it was added to the National Register of Historic Places.
I found this church (also known as Duncan Church) through the National Register of Historic Places. It’s located in Gann Valley, South Dakota and was built in 1927. It’s design is basic, two panel doors open into a central aisle flanked by a column of pews. The Parish was founded in 1887 and the original church was destroyed by a tornado in 1924.
This tiny church in South Dakota may or may not be called Emmanuel Lutheran. It also might not even be an actual church, but it’s located on the edge of a small cemetery in the middle of prairie land in western South Dakota.
Holy Trinity Church is right off I-90 in Brule County, South Dakota. Built in 1895, the church originally was in nearby Bendon, but was moved to avoid demolition. Soon after, in 1983, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Originally it served the Catholic population of Czech pioneers who settled in this part of South Dakota.
This church, convent, and cemetery is in Zell, South Dakota. Zell is a tiny town of fewer than 50 people in the northeast quadrant of the state. The entire complex, including the cemetery grounds covers about 7 acres. The convent is the oldest building, built in 1883 and was home for the Benedictine Sisters. The gable roof church was built in 1905 and the design of the church was very unusual for a rural South Dakota parish at the time. The complex was added to the National Register of Historic Places, but the school closed in 1963 and the convent and other buildings are now privately owned.