Fort Yates, North Dakota

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Fort Yates is a city in Sioux County, North Dakota in the United States. It is the tribal headquarters of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and county seat of Sioux County[3]. The population was 228 at the 2000 census.



The first US Army post at this site was established in 1863 as the Standing Rock Cantonment with the purpose of overseeing the Hunkpapa and Blackfeet bands, and the Inhunktonwan and Cutheads of the Upper Yanktonais, of the Lakota Oyate. Its name was changed by the US Army in 1878 to honor Captain George Yates who was killed by the Lakota Oyate at the Battle of Little Big Horn in 1876. The Army post and fort were decommissioned in 1903, leaving the agency town its name.

Fort Yates also served as the headquarters of the US Standing Rock Indian Agency, headed by US Indian Service Agent James McLaughlin who ordered the arrest of Sitting Bull on 14 December 1890. The 19th-century American Indian leader Sitting Bull was once buried at Fort Yates, but reports indicate that his body was possibly removed and transferred to a gravesite overlooking the Missouri River near Mobridge, South Dakota. An historical marker (pictured) notes the location of the Fort Yates burial site. Sitting Bull College is in the city of Fort Yates.


Fort Yates is located at 46°5′6″N 100°37′49″W / 46.085°N 100.63028°W / 46.085; -100.63028 (46.084899, -100.630144)[4].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 0.1 square miles (0.2 km²), all of it land.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 228 people, 73 households, and 47 families residing in the town. The population density was 3,688.4 people per square mile (1,467.2/km²). There were 78 housing units at an average density of 1,261.8/sq mi (501.9/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 93.42% Native American, 5.26% White, and 1.32% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.95% of the population.

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