Street Address
1800 US 18 Bypass
Hot Springs, SD 57747
Mailing Address
PO Box 692
Hot Springs, SD 57747
phone: 605-745-6017
fax: 605-745-3038
Gift Shop
Online Gift Shop
Special Event Rental
Group Tours
Joe Muller, COO/Business Manager
phone: 605-745-6017
Dr. Larry Agenbroad, Site Director/Chief Scientist
Olga Potapova, Collections Manager
Sharon Mclain, Elementary Educator
Don Esker, Secondary Educator/In-situ Bonebed Curator
Justin Wilkins, Asst. Bonebed Curator/Secondary Educator
Pati Blackwell, Development Officer
Diana Turner, Accounting/membership
Beverley Lundell, Secretary


For centuries the bones lay buried, until discovered by chance in 1974 while excavating for a housing development, earth moving equipment exposed South Dakota's greatest fossil treasure. Fortunately, through the work of local citizens, the Mammoth Site was preserved. Today it is the world's largest Columbian mammoth exhibit, and a world-renown research center for Pleistocene studies.

Now enclosed and protected by a climate controlled building, the sinkhole and the in-situ exhibit of mammoth bones attracts visitors year round. The bones are displayed as they were discovered, in the now dry pond sediments for an "in-situ" exhibit. Walkways allow visitors a close-up view of the fossils. To date, 55 mammoths have been identified, along with the remains of a giant short-faced bear, camel, llama, prairie dog, wolf, fish, and numerous invertebrates.

The majority of fossils found at the Mammoth Site are from the North American Columbian mammoth. Evidence of three woolly mammoths have also been discovered here, making this "east meets west mammoth gathering" the first time both species have been found together. Fossils of other Ice Age animals have also been discovered: camel, llama, giant short-faced bear, wolf, coyote and prairie dog to name a few. Imprint fossils of bird feathers, complete fish skeletons, and thousands of mollusk shells have also been recovered from this now-dry 26,000 year old sinkhole.

The Mammoth Site offers the museum visitor a 30 minute guided tour plus a 10 minute video. The tour/video information features the Mammoth Site and Ice Age Geology, Paleontology, and Paleoecology. Special attention is given to the hands-on exhibits, which allows the optimum learning experience.

Artifacts Collections

Ferguson Collection

Research Collections

Mammoth Site excavation

Educational Programs

Mammoth Site Education Department (K-5): Teachers & Home Schooling you sometimes feel overwhelmed by hands-on science activities? Do you feel there is never enough time to develop, then gather the necessary resources for a "fun", yet educational project? Let the Mammoth Site Education Department come to the rescue with our "kid-tested" teaching aids! Schedule an Outreach visit (Sharon or Don will travel up to approximately 150 miles), or...order a "Mammoth In A Trunk" kit to be delivered to your front door, or....visit the museum to have a personal grade-level guided tour of the Mammoth Site. Pre-visit, on-site, and post-visit hands-on activities are available from September though May. Live demonstration. Visit the museum to have a personal grade-level guided tour of the Mammoth Site.

  • Follow MammothSite on Twitter: Use the Education Department's Curricular Activities Booklets, or... purchase the Mammoth Site's interactive CD ROM (3 hours of educational entertainment and games to be use again and again!) Shop our online museum store for educational kits, toys and books. Grade-Level Personalized Guided Tours For Visiting Learning Groups.
  • The Hot Springs Mammoth Site, as part of its educational mission, has undertaken a partnership with the Hot Springs School District to design and test a series of K-5 Science units. Now in booklet form, these science curricular activity booklets are available for classroom and home schooling use. The informative curricular booklets explain each grade level activity and list the economical supplies needed


Lecture Halls


Access: Scholars, Staff Only

Appointment required: Yes


3 newsletters per year, and an annual report


Gift Shop

Online Gift Shop

Special Event Rental

Group Tours