Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Dakota, since 1861 a territory of the United States of America, situate in lat. 42° 28' to 49° N., and long. 90° 25' to 104° 5' W., having on the N. Assiniboia and Manitoba, on the S. Nebraska, on the E. Minnesota and Iowa, and on the W.Montana and Wyoming; in 1889 the territory was formed into two states of nearly equal size, N. Dakota, with capital Bismarck, and S. Dakota, with capital Yankton. It consists mostly of plain, till lately prairie and covered by herds of bison, with a stretch of high plateau running from N.W. to S.E., and a smaller stretch to the E. of James river valley. The country seems once to have been the bed of a great lake, and consists largely of glacial and alluvial drift. The territory is well watered by the Missouri, which flows from NW. to S.E. and receives many tributaries, and by the Red River which flows N. into Lake Winnipeg. In the S.W. is the district of the Black Hills, which covers 3,000 square miles and rises to a height of 8,200 feet. The country produces good varieties of stone, clays, chalk, and gypsum, and part of it is underlain by beds of lignite. There are springs of natural gas. Among metals, gold is largely worked. as is silver to a smaller extent, and more tin is produced by Dakota than by any other part of America. The climate much resembles that of the neighbouring parts of Canada - warm summers with cool nights, and cold but bright and exhilarating winters. Blizzards and cyclones are not infrequent. The land, by reason of its freedom from timber, is specially fitted for farming and grazing. The rapid strides made by civilisation in these days is shown by the fact that in 1851 a first treaty was made with the Indians for part of their hunting grounds; and now the bison has gone, and the Red Indian is fast disappearing.