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Charles Mix County

Charles Mix County is named for Charles Mix, who was a commissioner of Indian affairs.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Brule CountyAurora County and Douglas County

E – Hutchinson County and Bon Homme County

S – Knox County, Nebraska and Boyd County, Nebraska

W – Gregory County


Created:  May 8, 1862                            Map of South Dakota highlighting Charles Mix County

County Seat:

Papineau       1862 – 1869

Platte Creek  1869 – 1878

Wheeler         1878 – 1916

Lake Andes   1916 – present


County Courthouse – Lake Andes


Location:  400 Main Street / South 5th Avenue      

Built:  1917 – 1918

Style:  Prairie School

Architect:  William L Steele

Contractor:  A M Wold Construction Company of Brookings


Description:  The building faces north and is a three story buff colored brick and concrete structure. The building is located on spacious landscaped grounds in the center of Lake Andes. The north front entrance projects from the main building on the first story. The center section also projects and has vertical windows. The east and west wings are lower with the center of the building rising higher. Each of the third floor window bays is topped with projecting terra cotta cornices with a floral design. The center bay on the front facade has a projecting vestibule which enters the courthouse midway between the first and second floors. The vestibule is surrounded by decorative terra cotta panels.  Each of the roof levels is hidden behind parapets which are topped with a light-colored coping below which is a course of alternating recessed soldier bricks. The interior has low ceilings and exotic woodwork, stained glass windows, including a stained glass dome, and elegant panels and friezes. The County Circuit Court courtroom is located on the west side of the second story. The County Circuit Court courthouse is in the Craftsman style and is surrounded by tall, paneled wood wainscoting. The courtroom railing is a balustrade composed square balusters. A wood cornice molding encircles the room at the window heads. The ceiling has been dropped with suspended acoustical tile and the original light fixtures replaced with fluorescent units. The courtroom furniture is original. The building retains almost complete architectural integrity—both exterior and interior—from the time of its construction. The building houses the County Circuit Court of the 1st Judicial Circuit and the County Magistrate Court.


See:  The architeict William Steele also designed the courthouse in Wodbury County, Iowa.


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Charles Mix County Courthouse


See:  The 1st Judicial Circuit includes Aurora County, Bon Homme CountyBrule CountyBuffalo CountyClay County, Davison CountyDouglas CountyHanson CountyHutchinson CountyMcCook CountyTurner CountyUnion County and Yankton County.


History:  The county was created in 1862 and the first county seats were located at Papineau in 1862 and Platte Creek in 1869. In 1878, Wheeler was named as the county seat. The first courthouse was a two story wood frame structure with an open bell tower built in 1881 at a cost of $2000. The county seat was moved to Lake Andes in 1916 and Wheeler was flooded by Lake Francis. The third and present courthouse was constructed in 1917 to 1918 at a cost of $119,000.



County Courthouse – Lake Andes































County Circuit Court courtroom















Photos taken 2009, 2010, 2016 and 2018