82 Mickelson Drive

Yankton, SD 57078

Phone: (605) 665-3898



Monday - Saturday

10 am to 4 pm


© 2019 Mead Cultural

    Education Center


The Mead Building was constructed in 1909 under the direction of Dr. Leonard C. Mead. It was originally part of the women’s ward for the Dakota Hospital for the Insane, now named the Human Services Center.  It was a grand facility utilized until the 1980’s. 

In 2008 the Yankton County Historical Society voted in favor of saving and rehabilitating the building for use as a museum and education center. It opened to the public in December of 2018. 

The MCEC feature exhibits on local and region history, details

on those exhibits can be found in the Exhibitions tab.


We are located at 82 Mickelson Drive in Yankton, South Dakota and are open Monday - Saturday 10 am to 4 pm. 


The Yankton County Historical Society, through the Dakota Territorial Museum, exists to preserve, protect, interpret, and educate the public about the heritage and development of the city and county of Yankton, and the Dakota Territory.  

Heritage Park raffle photo for square 8x

Thank You To our 2020 Raffle Sponsors!

Stan Hoffart

Our Story 

1936 to Present

In June, 1936 Yanktons first museum opened under the direction of the Daniel Newcomb Chapter of Daughters of the American Revolution. The Museum was located in the former Dakota Territorial Council Hall - which had been relocated in present-day Riverside Park.


In 1953, the hall and museum were moved to West Side Park.

In 1961 the Yankton County Historical Society was officially formed and took over care of the Museum.

The 1971 a new and larger building was built next to the old council building. For more than 30 years the Museum has called this building home. The former Dakota Territorial Council building remained as extra exhibit space, and many additional outside buildings have been added, including the Gunderson Rural School House, Hovden Cabin and the Burlington Northern Caboose. 

Calendar of Events



2012, the YCHS Board of Directors accepted the task of saving a building located on the north edge of Yankton that was part of the former Dakota Hospital for the Insane campus.


The Mead Building has been a multi-year, multi-million dollar venture that reopened in 2018 as the Mead Cultural Education Center (MCEC). The MCEC is home to the Yankton County Historical Society, Dakota Territorial Museum, and the future home of the Yankton College Alumni offices. Our new location is 82 Mickelson Drive in Yankton South Dakota.

And even though we are open, the task of restoring the Mead building is not complete! The first two floors have completed exhibits (see those in the exhibition tab) and traveling exhibits space. The basement, third floor, and east wing are still in the construction phase. We are also fundraising for Heritage Park and planning to move all our historic buildings in 2021. 


Artifact of The month

This months featured artifact is a 1915-1916 Yankton license plate, we suspect this license plate was for a motorcycle. What we know today as the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally was originally called the Black Hills Classic. The event consisted of a single race with nine participants. The founder, Clarence “Pappy” Hoel, purchased an Indian motorcycle franchise in 1936 and formed the Jackpine Gypsies the same year. The Jackpine Gypsies gathered for the first rally on August 14, 1938.

Traveling Exhibits

July 1 to August 30, 2020

Living Traditions Dakota, Nakota, Lakota Art explores painting, bead work, and ceremonial traditions of the Sioux Nation. It compares the modern era to the reservation era. 

Drawn To the Land Homesteading Dakota examines the homesteading experience in Dakota Territory answering who, where and how they accomplished it. These two exhibits are made possible through the South Dakota State Historical Society. They will be on display upstairs in Dolly and Leonard Hall through August 26. 

Museum hours are Monday - Saturday 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Please call or email with questions 605-665-3898 or e-mail info@meadbuilding.org. 

Yankton General Federation of Women's Club Exhibit

July 1 to September 30, 2020

The Yankton General Federation of Women’s Club Exhibit highlights the groups work over the last 100 years. This organization is dedicated to community improvement by enhancing the lives of others through volunteer service.

Among the first members were pioneer women who raised money to build churches, schools, promoted city clean ups, and other events to civilize their rough and tumble town.

In more recent times they have expanded into music camps, historic preservation, CPR instruction and other ideas aimed at community improvement. It’s a must see exhibit on display until September 30. 

Museum hours are Monday - Saturday 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Please call or email with questions 605-665-3898 or e-mail info@meadbuilding.org.