Watertown, South Dakota
|Watertown, South Dakota|
|— City —|
|Nickname(s): South Dakota's Rising Star|
|Codington County and the state of South Dakota|
|• Mayor||Gary Williams|
|• Total||25.04 sq mi (64.85 km2)|
|• Land||17.45 sq mi (45.20 km2)|
|• Water||7.59 sq mi (19.66 km2)|
|Elevation||1,732 ft (528 m)|
|• Estimate (2011)||21,658|
|• Density||1,231.1/sq mi (475.3/km2)|
|Time zone||Central Time Zone (UTC-6)|
|• Summer (DST)||CDT (UTC-5)|
|GNIS feature ID||1258841|
Watertown is a city in and the county seat of Codington County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 21,482 at the 2010 census. It is the fifth largest city in South Dakota, just smaller than Brookings. It is also the principal city of the Watertown Micropolitan Statistical Area, which includes all of Codington and Hamlin counties. Gary Williams is the current Mayor.
Watertown is home to the Redlin Art Center which houses many of the original art works produced by Terry Redlin, one of America's most popular wildlife artists. Watertown also is home to the Bramble Park Zoo and the Watertown Regional Library. The Watertown Public Opinion is a six-day daily newspaper published in Watertown.
Watertown's residential real estate is some of the most affordable in South Dakota for cities of its size; the median price for a home in Watertown is around $200,000.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 25.04 square miles (64.85 km2), of which, 17.45 square miles (45.20 km2) is land and 7.59 square miles (19.66 km2) is water. Watertown sits on the Big Sioux River and two major lakes, Lake Pelican and Lake Kampeska. Most of Watertown also sits upon a short plateau. Elevation at Watertown Regional Airport is 1,745 feet.
Watertown was founded in 1879 as a rail terminus when the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad reactivated part of a line it had constructed to Lake Kampeska. The city was named after Watertown, New York, the hometown of brothers John E. Kemp and Oscar P. Kemp, some of the city's founders.
During the 1880s, Watertown prospered as a transportation hub after the railroads had been extended further west. Along with several other cities, Watertown had been a candidate as capital of the new state of South Dakota, although it lost out to the more centrally located Pierre. The city's current newspaper, the Watertown Public Opinion, began publishing in 1887.
In the mid-20th century, Interstate 29 was constructed through eastern South Dakota. The route included a slight bend to bring the highway closer to Watertown. The interstate's construction has been a major economic benefit to the larger communities along its route, including Watertown.
The per capita income for the city was $18,994. About 5.7% of families and 9.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.5% of those under age 18 and 11.0% of those age 65 or over.
2010 census 
As of the census of 2010, there were 21,482 people, 9,278 households, and 5,563 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,231.1 inhabitants per square mile (475.3 /km2). There were 10,050 housing units at an average density of 575.9 per square mile (222.4 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.8% White, 0.4% African American, 2.4% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.5% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.6% of the population.
There were 9,278 households out of which 29.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.7% were married couples living together, 10.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 4.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 40.0% were non-families. 33.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.90.
The median age in the city was 36.6 years. 24.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.3% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 24.9% were from 25 to 44; 25.2% were from 45 to 64; and 15.4% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.2% male and 50.8% female.
2000 census 
As of the census of 2000, there were 20,237 people, 8,385 households, and 5,290 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,328.9 people per square mile (513.0/km²). There were 9,193 housing units at an average density of 603.7 per square mile (233.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.25% White, 0.14% African American, 1.65% Native American, 0.33% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.71% from other races, and 0.90% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.28% of the population. 47.1% were of German, 19.8% Norwegian and 5.9% Irish ancestry according to Census 2000. 96.5% spoke English, 1.7% Spanish and 1.1% German as their first language.
There were 8,385 households out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.6% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.9% were non-families. 30.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.98.
In the city the population was spread out with 25.9% under the age of 18, 11.3% from 18 to 24, 27.9% from 25 to 44, 19.9% from 45 to 64, and 15.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 96.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.9 males.
Watertown has two institutions providing post-secondary education. Lake Area Technical Institute is a public technical school classified as a community college, offering degrees in areas such as Agriculture, Nursing, and Welding. There is also a satellite campus of Mount Marty College, a private Catholic school based in Yankton, South Dakota.
Watertown Middle School is the only public middle school in Watertown. The Watertown School Board is currently in talks to construct a second middle school, but the location is still pending.
There are multiple elementary schools in Watertown. The five public elementary schools include: Lincoln Elementary, Jefferson Elementary, Roosevelt Elementary, McKinnely Elementary, and Mellette Elementary. Immaculate Conception School is a private Catholic elementary school. St. Martin's Lutheran School is a private Lutheran elementary school. Watertown Christian School is a private non-denominational Christian elementary school.
Points of interest 
- Redlin Art Center
- Bramble Park Zoo
- Codington County Heritage Museum
- Mellette House
- Watertown Family Aquatic Center
- Watertown Stadium
- Lake Kampeska
- Watertown Regional Library
Local media 
- The Watertown Public Opinion is the local daily newspaper.
AM Radio 
|AM radio stations|
|950 AM||KWAT||News/Talk||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown|
|1480 AM||KSDR||1480 Talk Radio||News/Talk||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown|
FM Radio 
|FM radio stations|
|Frequency||Call sign||Name||Format||Owner||Target city/market||City of license|
|89.1 FM||KPGT||Religious||Church Planters of America||Watertown||Watertown|
|Jimmy Swaggart Ministries||Watertown||Watertown|
|91.9 FM||K220IT||The Refuge||Contemporary Christian||Refuge Media Group||Watertown||Watertown|
|92.9 FM||KSDR-FM||KS93||Country||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown||Watertown|
|96.1 FM||KIXX||Kicks 96||Hot AC||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown||Watertown|
|96.9 FM||KDLO-FM||Big Country 96.9||Country||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown||Watertown|
|99.1 FM||KXLG||Classic Hits/News/Talk||Dakota Communications||Watertown||Milbank|
|104.3 FM||KKSD||Hippie Radio||Classic Hits||Three Eagles Communications||Watertown||Milbank|
|106.3 FM||KPHR||Power 106.3||Classic Rock||Armada Media||Watertown||Ortonville|
Notable natives and residents 
- Cleveland L. Abbott, (b. 1892, d. 1955) Outstanding coach and educator at Tuskegee Institute
- Stephen Foster Briggs, (born 1885, died 1976), Inventor, founder Briggs & Stratton Corporation
- Robert J. Fox, Roman Catholic priest
- Fred H. Hildebrandt, 3-term US Congressman
- George R. Mather, General in the U.S. Army, Commander in Chief, United States Southern Command (USCINCSO) from 1969 to 1971
- Arthur C. Mellette, (b. 1842 - d. 1896), last Dakota Territorial Governor and first Governor of the State of South Dakota.
- Lee Raymond, (born 1938), chemical engineer and long-term Chairman and CEO, Exxon Corporation and ExxonMobile, born and attended primary and secondary school in Watertown
- Terry Redlin, (b. 1937) wildlife artist
Major employers 
International Manufacturers with at least 50 Employees
- ESCO Manufacturing, Inc.
- Benchmark Foam, Inc.
- AMPI, Inc.
- Minnesota Rubber
- Angus-Palm, A Worthington Industries Company
- Persona, Inc.
- Smith Equipment Manufacturing Company
- Terex Utilities
- Tower Systems Inc.
- Twin City Die Castings
- Wurth Electronics Midcom
- Hasselstrom, p. 29.
- "SD Towns". South Dakota State Historical Society. Retrieved 2010-02-17.
- "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-06-21.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-06-21.
- "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2013-01-05.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "South Dakota Homes For Sale By City". South Dakota Real Estate Trends. RealEstate.com. Retrieved 28 January 2013.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- DeLorme (2001). South Dakota Atlas & Gazetteer. Yarmouth, Maine: DeLorme. ISBN 0-89933-330-3
- Thompson (ed.), p. 173.
- Schell, p. 333.
- Watertown, South Dakota: Now. Watertown Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau, 2006
- "Watertown Campus". Retrieved 18 February 2011.
- Watertown Chamber of Commerce. "Watertown Chamber of Commerce". Retrieved 2008-03-03.
- Hasselstrom, Linda M. (1994). Roadside History of South Dakota. Missoula, MT: Mountain Press Publishing Company. ISBN 0-87842-262-5.
- Schell, Herbert S. (2004). History of South Dakota. Pierre, SD: South Dakota State Historical Society Press. ISBN 0-9715171-3-4.
- Thompson, Harry F. (ed.) (2009). A New South Dakota History (Second ed.). Sioux Falls, SD: Center for Western Studies - Augustana College. ISBN 978-0-931170-00-3.
- Watertown Government Website
- Watertown Area Chamber of Commerce
- Watertown Public Opinion - local newspaper
- Watertown Regional Library Website
- School District Website