These Are The 10 Worst Small Towns In South Dakota For 2018


Using science and data, we can tell you which teeny specks in SD are the pits.

Join RoadSnacks
This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out.

Swipe left for slideshow. Article continues below.
Advertisement. Article Continues Below.

Most Americans have never been to South Dakota. However, as the people who live there know, South Dakota is an awesome state.

But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, South Dakota has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Mount Rushmore State. Don’t shoot the messenger, this is all using data.

After analyzing more than 187 of South Dakota’s smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in South Dakota where you’d never want to live:

  1. Soldier Creek
  2. Bullhead
  3. Little Eagle
  4. Marty
  5. La Plant
  6. Kyle
  7. Parmelee
  8. Okreek
  9. St. Francis
  10. Lower Brule

Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since South Dakota has its stuff figured out.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers, or scroll to the bottom to see how your town ranked.

And if you already know about the small towns, check out the best places to live in South Dakota or the worst places to live in South Dakota.

Advertisement. Article Continues Below.

How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?

In order to rank the worst small towns to live in South Dakota, we had to determine what criteria people like or dislike about a place. It isn’t a stretch to assume that people like low crime, solid education, things to do and a stable economy.

So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.

How we crunched the numbers

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data, the Census’s 2010-2014 American Community Survey, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (The lower the worse)
  • Highest Unemployment Rates
  • Low housing costs (meaning there’s no demand)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Median income adjusted for the cost of living)
  • Education (Number of high school dropouts)
  • High Crime

We looked at cities with populations between 100 and 1,000 people, of which, there were a lot – 187 to be exact.

Additional note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the cities themselves. Dropout numbers are based on the adult population, not just the current graduation rates of teenagers.

Advertisement. Article Continues Below.

1. Soldier Creek


Population: 231
Median Income: $18,571
Median Home Value: $10,000

2. Bullhead


Population: 362
Median Income: $14,375
Median Home Value: $10,000

3. Little Eagle


Population: 334
Median Income: $16,750
Median Home Value: $27,500

4. Marty


Population: 496
Median Income: $27,778
Median Home Value: $28,500

5. La Plant


Population: 105
Median Income: $28,214
Median Home Value: $22,900

6. Kyle


Population: 868
Median Income: $14,107
Median Home Value: $14,800

7. Parmelee


Population: 728
Median Income: $28,036
Median Home Value: $54,400

8. Okreek


Population: 374
Median Income: $25,893
Median Home Value: $31,900

9. St. Francis


Population: 562
Median Income: $23,958
Median Home Value: $12,500

10. Lower Brule


Population: 671
Median Income: $23,295
Median Home Value: $40,300

There You Have It – The Worst Small Towns In South Dakota

If you’re analyzing teeny places in the Mount Rushmore State with the worst economic situations, where there’s high crime and there’s not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious enough, here are the best small towns to live in South Dakota, according to science.

  1. Best: Pine Lakes Addition
  2. 2nd Best: Warner
  3. 3rd Best: Bath

For more reading, check out:

  • These Are The 10 Most Boring Places In South Dakota
  • These Are The 10 Safest Places In South Dakota
  • These Are The 10 Most Dangerous Cities In South Dakota
  • Ranking Of The 100 Worst Small Towns In South Dakota

    City Rank Population Home Price
    Soldier Creek 1 231 $10,000
    Bullhead 2 362 $10,000
    Little Eagle 3 334 $27,500
    Marty 4 496 $28,500
    La Plant 5 105 $22,900
    Kyle 6 868 $14,800
    Parmelee 7 728 $54,400
    Okreek 8 374 $31,900
    St. Francis 9 562 $12,500
    Lower Brule 10 671 $40,300
    Isabel 11 156 $27,100
    Goodwill 12 696 $52,500
    Mcintosh 13 217 $24,000
    Hosmer 14 246 $33,900
    White River 15 592 $48,100
    Java 16 153 $28,100
    Mclaughlin 17 567 $41,300
    New Effington 18 210 $35,000
    Kadoka 19 809 $50,400
    Stockholm 20 109 $44,000
    Lake Andes 21 846 $36,300
    Dupree 22 548 $56,700
    Batesland 23 117 $18,100
    Veblen 24 447 $29,200
    Peever 25 124 $62,500
    Sinai 26 101 $57,100
    Leola 27 447 $44,300
    Waubay 28 557 $68,200
    Murdo 29 330 $56,500
    Monroe 30 196 $34,600
    Egan 31 307 $59,000
    Edgemont 32 837 $45,700
    Summit 33 390 $69,600
    Midland 34 113 $30,500
    Keystone 35 318 $133,300
    Newell 36 774 $63,300
    Faith 37 393 $68,600
    Tripp 38 668 $38,900
    Timber Lake 39 589 $52,200
    Carthage 40 151 $31,900
    Wakonda 41 275 $46,800
    Artesian 42 207 $35,000
    Wentworth 43 212 $41,000
    Bonesteel 44 360 $45,400
    Gary 45 278 $44,800
    Bridgewater 46 445 $51,700
    Bristol 47 350 $51,000
    Delmont 48 247 $48,100
    Astoria 49 143 $63,300
    Blunt 50 377 $80,500
    Eureka 51 898 $52,400
    Roscoe 52 316 $46,000
    Herrick 53 128 $52,800
    Vale 54 134 $83,600
    Cresbard 55 138 $42,700
    Wessington 56 328 $63,300
    Oelrichs 57 101 $60,000
    Willow Lake 58 344 $55,900
    Conde 59 123 $34,300
    Bison 60 358 $56,500
    Oacoma 61 536 $110,200
    Viborg 62 847 $77,900
    Roslyn 63 197 $43,800
    Eden 64 113 $45,400
    Nisland 65 325 $43,200
    Hermosa 66 459 $92,900
    Martin 67 870 $54,600
    Spencer 68 131 $55,000
    Ashton 69 140 $42,500
    Geddes 70 220 $43,900
    Burke 71 612 $66,100
    Canistota 72 682 $79,000
    South Shore 73 207 $50,800
    Oldham 74 176 $31,800
    Menno 75 663 $58,400
    Hoven 76 434 $59,200
    Ramona 77 156 $51,700
    Yale 78 123 $65,000
    Hecla 79 160 $37,500
    Wessington Springs 80 812 $69,600
    Pollock 81 176 $35,400
    Wasta 82 118 $36,300
    Philip 83 808 $77,900
    Doland 84 214 $31,800
    Cavour 85 120 $80,000
    Bowdle 86 465 $53,300
    Pukwana 87 241 $61,500
    Alpena 88 291 $48,100
    Frederick 89 240 $56,700
    Kimball 90 574 $72,800
    Estelline 91 882 $79,100
    Irene 92 545 $60,800
    Selby 93 784 $57,600
    Scotland 94 791 $60,200
    Volin 95 204 $65,800
    Rosholt 96 501 $71,300
    Reliance 97 254 $73,900
    Big Stone City 98 576 $78,100
    Columbia 99 149 $58,000
    Trent 100 290 $89,600

    Like RoadSnacks on Facebook:

     Worst 

    Facebook Discussion

    comments

    5 thoughts on “These Are The 10 Worst Small Towns In South Dakota For 2018

    1. You forgot Fruitdale SD. Population is about 50 people if we are lucky. It’s 10 miles outside of belle fourche on Highway 212. Lots of crime. Low house costs. Low income. But it’s a town.

    2. Can’t believe Eureka was so low on the list – 2 lakes for fishing, water skiing, and jet skiing, golf course, bowling alley, 2 softball fields, tennis courts, nice park, 6 churches, hospital, dentist, chiropractor, museum, fitness center….

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *