Despite the city's size of one square city block, businesses such as Wheat Growers, the Carpenter Cafe, Dick's Garage, and the post office flourish here.
Carpenter was named by postmaster John C. Opsahl for his recently deceased friend, G. W. Carpenter, a land office agent in nearby Watertown, Codington County. U.S. federal censuses enumerate a George W. Carpenter, born c1833-1834 in New York, in Waterton from 1880-1910; he was a veteran of the American Civil War, with service in the 21st and the 116th New York Infantry regiments.
^Ancestry.com. 1890 Veterans Schedules [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: The Generations Network, Inc., 2005. Original data: United States of America, Bureau of the Census. Special Schedules of the Eleventh Census (1890) Enumerating Union Veterans and Widows of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1890. M123, 118 rolls.