Historical west side of Main Street
Historical west side of Main Street

On October 2, 1883, the town known as Ipswich was platted on sections 27 and 28; during the BOOMS, or the railroad project as quoted by The Dakota Tribune. Growth was due to the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul railway extending its railway line west from Aberdeen 26 miles prompting the municipality of Ipswich to bloom. On November 1, 1883 the Board of County Commissioners changed the county seat to Ipswich due to the migration to the new city. Mr. C.H. Prior is responsible for the native name of Ipswich which originates from the British Isles. Trade was successful and sparked the city of Ipswich to grow and multiply. However with the completion of the Panama Canal traffic diminished in 1914, and by 1982 the main line was abandoned, was later purchased by the State of South Dakota and is now operated by Burlington Northern Railroad.

The oldest operating community business is the Ipswich Tribune founded by A.B. Chubbuck and D.B Worthington in May of 1883 in the small community of Freeport.  With the construction of the railroad spirit from Aberdeen to Ipswich the two men relocated to the traffic of the populace. Shortly thereafter Mr. J.W. Parmley, a staunch businessman and nationally recognized for his energies as the President of the Yellowstone Trail Association, sought ownership of the publication.  In the spring of 1912 he spearheaded an idea to connect rural communities together with one main good road that stretched from Minneapolis to Yellowstone Park. The present US highways 12 and 10 follow the original route of the Yellowstone Trail.

Ipswich is commonly known as the home of the Yellowstone Trail, which gave way to the town tradition of Trail Days, first thought of by Warren "Everlastinglyatit Put" Putnam, a traveling hat salesman and South Dakota booster. The first celebration of "Trail Day" was held on Monday, June 19, 1939, promoted and sponsored by the Ipswich Commercial Club. Trail Days is held to remember the strife of settlement in Edmunds County, remember the dreams of pioneers such as J.W. Parmley who envisioned "a Good Road from Plymouth Rock to Puget Sound", as well as bring the community of near and surrounding together.

All except the Pioneer Village and Memorial Arch are listed on National Registry of Historic Places due to the fact that those specific historical buildings have been moved from the original site of construction. All other historical buildings are still in places of origin.





Official Website of Ipswich, South Dakota