5 he popular refrain , “ Oh , give me a home where the buffalo roam ,
T where the deer and the antelope play , where seldom is heard a discouraging word and the skies are not cloudy all day ,” could well have been written about Custer County , South Dakota .
It was gold that brought the first settlers to Custer County , as they followed the wagon tracks of the 1,000-strong 1874 Expedition led by Lt . Col . George A . Custer . But it has other , less tangible lures enticing residents to the area today : spectacular scenery , a wide variety of recreational opportunities , worldclass attractions , a healthy environment , a sense of community and an indefinable essence which is often described as an aura of spirituality .
Surrounded by 1.2 million acres of the
Black Hills National Forest , Custer City has three city parks , ball fields , horseshoe pits , volleyball and tennis courts , community swimming pool , nine-hole public golf course , disc golf course , skateboard park and aerobics / activities at the YMCA .
As one Custer High School graduate , who now lives and works in Texas , said , “ I miss the Hills very much . The air is so different from anywhere else . It makes you feel more alive , and every day you wake up in the Hills , there always seems to be this scent of freshness or newness , like a new experience or adventure to be found . It ’ s almost magical , and in a lot of ways it ’ s just downright sacred . I was so fortunate to grow up in such a great place within a good community .”
For those of us who are fortunate enough to live and work here , it truly is the gold at the end of the rainbow .
County Seat : Custer City ( established 1875 )
Oldest City in the Black Hills
Elevation : 5,318 Feet
Average Temp :
High : 56F
Average summer temperature : 62.2 degrees
Average winter temperature : 29.2 degrees
Avg . Coldest Month : High 37F Low15F
( January )
Avg . Warmest Month : High 80F Low 54F
( July )
Average Precipitation : 19.68 ”
Average Growing Season : May - September
Population ( 2018 )
Median Household Income ( 2018 )
Leading Employers Monument Health Custer Hospital 200 Black Hills National Forest 100 Custer School District 167 Custer County 75 Lynn ’ s Dakotamart 45 Crazy Horse Memorial 220 ( summer ) Custer State Park 105 ( summer ) Custer Hospitality 65 Labor Management Relations South Dakota is a right to work state . Percentage of workers organized All workers 0 % Manufacturing 0 % Taxation Sales Tax State - 4.5 % Local 2 % B & B - 1 % Tourism 1.5 %
Tax Structure City Mill Levy Tax : Owner occupied 5.983 per 1,000 % of Full Value Assessed : 80.72 %
Education Custer School District ( 605 ) 673-3154 Pupil : Teacher Ratio 12.5:1 Elementary : 1 school , enrollment 269 Jr ./ Sr . High School : 1 school , enrollment 379 Hermosa : 1 school , enrollment 231
Water City of Custer 605-673-4824 Source : Well Wastewater City of Custer 605-673-4824 Type of treatment : Lagoon-primary
Government Type of Local Government : Mayor & City Council Sheriff ’ s Office : 18 ( including reserves ) Fire Department Personnel : 28 Volunteers Fire Insurance Rating : Class 5 city
5Y outside city limits City Zoning Ordinance : Yes County Zoning Ordinance : No Percentage of City Paved Streets : 95 % Ambulance Service : 22 members
Housing Average monthly rent for 2 bedroom house : $ 1,000 Average monthly rent for 2 bedroom apartment : $ 750- $ 850 Average cost of homes ( purchase price ): $ 175,500 city ; $ 325,292 county