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Delivering the Gold for Panhandlers and Farmers

Wild Bill Hickok, General George Custer, Crazy Horse and those four famous faces high on Mount Rushmore helped establish South Dakota as a national place of interest, but what really kicked things off was the gold rush of 1874. Mining was one of the South Dakota’s first industries, followed closely by the railroads, which brought panhandlers to the state and moved their gold out. Today, gold is one of two commodities railroads are not required to move, but railroads continue to have a big role in South Dakota’s economy: transporting more than 60 percent of the wheat, corn, soybeans and cattle that produced by the state’s thriving farm industry.