Beginning in the early 1960s, Minuteman 1B missile launch sites were installed in several locations throughout the central and upper United States. Their purpose was to deter Russia from launching a nuclear strike against the United States.
At one time there were 1,000 active Minuteman missiles arranged in six wings. The Minuteman II replaced the earlier models beginning in the 1970s. Some even featured multiple warheads inside one missile. Each Minuteman II missile had an explosive yield of 1,200,000 tons of TNT.
As a result of nuclear arms reduction talks between the Soviet Union and the United States, there are now only 400 active Minuteman missiles in the United States. The Delta-09 site was deactivated and serves as a public display.
Know Before You Go
The Delta-09 site is open daily from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm, subject to change. Admission is free. It is a short drive from the Interstate to the silo. The silos are 60 years old and require periodic maintenance.
The Delta-01 Launch Control Facility is closed for repairs, but the nearby Visitor Center remains open. Please phone 605-433-5552 or go online at www.nps.gov/mimi.