Skip to content
Home » US States » O-U » South Dakota » Hughes County

Hughes County


Hughes County is named for the Honorable Alexander Hughes, who was a member of the territorial legislature.


Surrounding County Courthouses: 

N – Sully County

E – Hyde County and Lyman County

S – Lyman County and Stanley County

W – Stanley County 


Created:   January 8, 1881                     Map of South Dakota highlighting Hughes County

County Seat:

Pierre  1881 – present


County Courthouse – Pierre


Location:  104 East Capitol Avenue / Euclid Avenue

Built:    1934 – 1935

Style:  Moderne and Art Deco

Architect:  Hugill and Blatherwick of Sioux Falls

Contractor:  Henry Carlson Company of Sioux Falls.


Description:  The building faces west and is a three story gray stone style structure. The building is located on landscaped grounds in the center of Pierre. The west front has gray colored stone trim and orange colored framing around the windows. The roof line is flat. The interior rooms of the courthouse are accessed from T-shaped corridors. A single-run staircase is located in the north leg of the “T”. The corridors are wainscoted with marble as are the columns as the intersection of the “T”. Floors are terrazzo in a bold geometric design. Stair rails are brushed aluminum with horizontal divisions and newel posts with a floral motif at the top. The coffered ceiling panels are enframed by an undulate torus molding of grapes and leaves. The original light fixtures have all been replaced with surface-mount fluorescent units. From the second floor a single-run staircase rises to the former jail facilities on the fourth floor—this floor has been abandoned. The County Circuit Court courtroom, which occupies the eastern half of the second floor, has been totally remodeled and no historic finishes remain. The walls are covered with wood paneling and the ceilings have been dropped with suspended acoustical tile. Some historic furnishings remain such as the judge’s bench and the courtroom benches. The building houses the County Circuit Court of the 6th Judicial Circuit and the County Magistrate Court. 


See:  National Register of Historic Places – Hughes County Courthouse


See:  Located in the county is the South Dakota Supreme Court.


See:  The 6th Judicial Circuit includes Bennett CountyGregory County, Haakon CountyHyde County, Jackson CountyJones County, Lyman CountyMellette CountyPotter County, Stanley CountySully County, Todd County and Tripp County


History:  The county was established in 1873 and Pierre became the county seat in 1880 when the county was organized. The first meeting of commissioners was held in a Pierre hotel. Premises were rented for the county office. The first courthouse was a two story wood frame structure designed by Proudfoot & Bird, of Des Moines, Iowa and built by Smith Brothers of Pierre in 1883 at a cost of $30,000. In 1909, the cupola was removed. The second and present courthouse was constructed in 1934 to 1935 at a cost of $110,842.



County Courthouse – Pierre



















County Circuit Court courtroom











County Commissioner’s Meeting Room













Picture 1883 County Courthouse



Picture 1883 County Courthouse with cupola removed 1909

Photos taken 2006, 2010 and 2015