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Arts & Life

Deadwood Legends Give Distorted View of History


No place in South Dakota is filled with more colorful and unique historical characters than Deadwood. "Wild Bill" Hickok, Calamity Jane, Seth Bullock and Poker Alice are a few of the town's legends whose names are familiar to people around the world. From 19th-century dime novels through the recent HBO series Deadwood, their stories have been mythologized and their importance to the mining town often exaggerated. Hickok, for example, was only in Deadwood a few weeks before he was shot during a heated poker game in the #10 Saloon. Darrel Nelson, exhibits director at the Days of '76 Museum, joined Dakota Midday with the real and not so glamorous stories of Deadwood's legends.