Archive for February 22nd, 2021

Missouri River Commission maps, 1892-1895, showing Vermillion and Burbank, SD area.

Though the name never appeared on a map, the bend of the Missouri River south of Burbank, SD was called Negro Bend. The French named it after a local settlement of Black woodcutters who sold fuel wood to steamboats. On many maps, the region is called Kate Sweeney Bend, after a steamboat that sunk in the area in 1855.

Source: Carlberg, Janet Joyce. “A study of place-names in Clay County, South Dakota.” Master’s Thesis, University of South Dakota, 1962. Call number LD 5071.3x .C1918. This thesis and the Missouri River Commission maps are located in the Archives and Special Collections.

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