Protect Cultural Resources

Don't Pocket our Past

South Dakota Citizens, through the SD Department of Game, Fish and Parks, are steward of hundreds of culturally significant sites. These include prehistoric villages, American Indian worship sites, old military forts, cemeteries, log cabins, early trading post sties, and areas where railroads once ran.

In 1906, Congress passed the first of many laws to protect archaeological sites on federal land. Today, similar laws in South Dakota protect these cultural resources.

Archaeological and historic resources are nonrenewable resources that enhance our understanding and appreciation of the cultural heritage of South Dakota. These sites possess information that is significant not only to our state, but to our nation as well.

Report illegal activity

If you notice illicit digging at an archaeological site, see someone collecting artifacts or witness an act of vandalism, call 605.773.3391.

Artifact collecting is Prohibited

Collecting artifacts at South Dakota state parks, recreation areas, and other land owned or managed by the Game, Fish and Parks is prohibited under state law.

What types of items are considered resources?

  • Pieces of pottery
  • Antique glass
  • Old hardware
  • Beads
  • Rock painting and carvings
  • Bones
  • Railroad items