Kingsbury County Courthouse

Court House 17 Front 1912

Kingsbury County was created and organized on February 2, 1880. It was named after George W. Kingsbury and T. A. Kingsbury, prominent brothers in territorial affairs.

De Smet was platted in 1880. On November 2, of that year, De Smet was chosen as the county seat of Kingsbury County. The deed for the present courthouse site was received from Mr. and Mrs. Albert Keep on May 30, 1882.

The final decision for building a courthouse was made in April of 1888. The east wing was not to exceed the cost of $4,000. On April 5, 1892, initiation for building the west wing was introduced. It wasn’t until January 1898 that M. E. Bush was awarded the contract to build an addition. In January of 1899 the new courthouse was opened for business.

Flowers and trees were planted and curved walkways were added to the grounds. The carriage drive-through was used by many horses and buggies.

In 1982, while the courthouse was being restored, six complete court cases were found in the basement vault, and all were in the handwriting of Charles P. Ingalls, dating from 1883 to 1884.

C. P. Ingalls served as Justice of the Peace for the young community of De Smet during those years.

Many Views of the Kingsbury County Courthouse

These photos were collected from postcards published featuring the Kingsbury County Courthouse. They feature many views, seasons, and years of the courthouse. Notice the different height of the trees.

 Court House 4 front(color) Court House 5 front(color wash) Court House 6 front Court House 7 Front 1909 Court House 8 Front  Court House 10 Front Court House 11 Front Court House 12 Front Court House 13 Front Court House 14 Front 1910 Court House 15 Front 1914 Court House 18 Front 1952 Court House 19 Front 1911 Court House 20 Front 1907 Court House 21 Front courthouse a0001

Activity Around the Courthouse

These two unique photos feature some of the aspects of life in De Smet. Pheasant hunting is still a popular pastime for hunters in this region.

Court House 9 Front

One mule pulling 10 young children, what a great way to play on a chilly winter afternoon!

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4 comments on “Kingsbury County Courthouse

  1. Heidi Brauer says:

    I wonder whose little building that is on the corner in the last picture with the kids and mule?

  2. Wonderful photos! Thank you for sharing.

  3. Connie in Colorado says:

    Love the old postcards of the courthouse and surrounding trees in stages of growth. I also recall seeing the panoramic view of De Smet from the courthouse tower somewhere in my readings. Are all the vaults in the basement now cleaned and in order? Thanks for the history!

  4. pmaghamfar says:

    Very special photos of an era gone by.

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