Governor #15: Leslie Jensen.

Governor #15: Leslie Jensen

Field review by the editors.

Pierre, South Dakota

In office 1937-1939

Leslie Jensen was a tax collector and president of Pierre's phone company when, without any experience, he ran for South Dakota governor and won. His two years in office were mostly unmemorable, which is why James Van Nuys sculpted Jensen in his most noteworthy role: as a soldier. Jensen fought Pancho Villa in Mexico, the Germans in World War I, and, after he left the governor's office, the Japanese in World War II, making him the only South Dakota chief executive with so much military experience. Bronze Jensen is dressed as if ready for battle in 1918, wearing his doughboy helmet, binoculars in hand, looking past the statehouse dome for incoming German biplanes.

Jensen survived countless foreign bullets and bombs, only to die in South Dakota in a 1964 car crash.

Also see: Trail of Governors

Governor #15: Leslie Jensen

Address:
425 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD
Directions:
On the south side of E. Capitol Ave. a couple hundred feet east of its intersection with N. Nicollet Ave., across from the state capitol building.
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Nearby Offbeat Places

Governor # 7: Robert Scadden VesseyGovernor # 7: Robert Scadden Vessey, Pierre, SD - < 1 mi.
Governor #13: Warren Everett GreenGovernor #13: Warren Everett Green, Pierre, SD - < 1 mi.
Governor #20: Joe FossGovernor #20: Joe Foss, Pierre, SD - < 1 mi.
In the region:
Governor #14: Thomas Matthew Berry, Pierre, SD - < 1 mi.

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