Darrel Nelson opens Season 3 of Images of the Past with a look the importance of transportation development in the Deadwood area.

The Days of ’76 Museum has re-vamped and is re-presenting its big exhibit of historical carriages. A grand opening for the exhibit is scheduled for Saturday, September 10.

Rededicated Fort Pierre To Deadwood Trail

Jul 25, 2016
Fort Pierre Development Corporation

The beginning of the Fort Pierre to Deadwood Trail is getting a new sign.

A rededication ceremony July 26th  in Fort Pierre is recognizing the beginning of the 200 mile route that guided travels to Deadwood in the late 1800s.

After gold was discovered in the Black Hills, settlers and gold prospectors came to Fort Pierre by train or riverboat and then followed the Fort Pierre to Deadwood Trail out west.

Tony nominated Broadway lyricist and playwright Bill Russell was born in Deadwood and raised in Spearfish. His Broadway writing debut was with “Side Show” (music by Henry Krieger). This month he is working with the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park as guest artist for the production of “Pageant.” He joins Dakota Midday for a conversation about art, theater, and the journey from the Black Hills to Broadway.

Gordy Pratt has been portraying Deadwood lawman Seth Bullock for more than 11 years. Today marks Pratt’s one thousandth show as Bullock. He joins Midday to share music, storytelling, and his  philosophy of performance that keeps audience satisfaction top of mind.

Historian Bill Swanson discusses the national interests that made the Gold Rush into the Black Hills a necessity. We’ll talk about the economic, political, and military factors that guaranteed the Black Hills would be “invaded.”

Bill Swanson teaches at Lemmon High School. He has been teaching about Black Hills ghost towns through the Black Hills Learning Center since 1999. His lecture on the Gold Rush into the Black Hills is part of Picnic on the Lawn at the Historic Adams House in Deadwood, Friday, June 24 at noon.

Phyllis Schrag says that if you have to grow up, it might as well be in a small town. The South Dakota Humanities scholar joins Dakota Midday for some unapologetic nostalgia as we talk about small town America through a child’s-eye view. Right after Midday, Schrag presents at the Days of 76 Museum in Deadwood for their Preservation Thursday event.

Traveling across the state comes with perils and rewards. On today's Images of the Past, we glimpse inside the diary of Anna Gerard, who wrote about her unglamorous stagecoach ride to Deadwood in August of 1878.

Archivist Jessica Michak tells the story of lost hairpins, wine, and a journey best appreciated when it was finally over.

Black Hills State University's Dr. David Wolff recently retired in order to spend  more time with his research. Today he joins Dakota Midday to talk about violence and death on the Black Hills mining frontier. From stagecoach robberies to vigilante justice, Wolff separates the pulp fiction from the fact as he talks with Dakota Midday host Lori Walsh.

Dept. Of Health Offers Mosquito Control Grants

Mar 15, 2016

Many in South Dakota welcome the arrival of spring and summer. But the season can also bring swarms of pesky mosquitoes. The State Department of Health awards grants funding to help local governments control mosquito populations and prevent West Nile virus.  

South Dakota’s West Nile epidemic peaked back in 2003. Since then, the number of West Nile cases has decreased from over 1,000 to 40 reported illnesses last year.

Lon Kightlinger is the state epidemiologist. He says mosquito control programs and grant funding help reduce the number of West Nile cases each year.  

Technology changes every job, and with every change, comes challenges. Kelly Fuller is the Chief of Police in Deadwood. His department has been researching the use of body cameras for law enforcement officers. Chief Fuller discusses the technical specifics of the cameras and how law enforcement officers today strive for transparency, accountability, and officer safety.

Deadwood History, Inc.

A new, original play explores the beginnings of Deadwood’s long and intertwined relationship with economic development and historic preservation. Written by Deadwood History, Inc. exhibits director Darrel Nelson, You Ain’t Heard Nothin’ Yet: Deadwood! is a three-act, traveling play set in the 1920s that goes from the Historic Adams House to the Days of ’76 Museum and ends at the Adams Museum.

Performances are Saturday, September 5 and Sunday, September 6 at 11 am and 2 pm. For reservations, call 605-722-4800.

Craps, Roulette, and Keno Coming to Deadwood

Jun 29, 2015
Amy Varland

Knowing when to hold them, and knowing when to fold them is important in poker but, maybe not so much in keno, craps, or roulette.   

Regardless, officials in Deadwood believe the new games coming to town on Wednesday, July 1st will keep the town’s gambling casinos competitive.

In the November election South Dakota voters approved the addition of the new games to Deadwood casinos.   Those like Mike Rodman couldn’t be more pleased.

Amy Varland

The cast and crew from ABC’s reality dating show ‘The Bachelor’ filmed an episode last October inside the Saloon #10 on Deadwood Main Street. This season’s Bachelor, Chris Soules, dubbed “Prince Farming” looks for his soulmate and takes a gamble on love in Deadwood.

It’s no secret that it’s tough to keep a secret in small towns – especially when the action happens on Main Street.
So when news surfaced that ABC’s The Bachelor was renting out the Saloon #10 in Deadwood for a day last October to film an episode – locals tuned in.

Calamity Jane is probably the best known woman of the Wild West. She arrived in Deadwood in 1876 and captured the attention of writers and journalists. They shared with newspaper readers across the nation stories about this fearless, unorthodox young woman who cussed, smoked, chewed tobacco, and drank.

On May 21st, 1980 federal officials raided Deadwood’s infamous brothels, which led to their closure. The brothels had been open since the Gold Rush days when prostitutes first arrived in the mining town with Charlie Utter’s wagon train in 1876.

Amy Varland

Officials in Deadwood say the Passport Parking option is working well for the city. Passport Parking is an app that visitors can download to their Smartphone and pay for parking with a credit or debit card instead of using coins. The app was first available in Deadwood last spring.

Deadwood Police Chief Kelly Fuller says in the past visitors complained about having to leave what they were doing to go put money in the meters every two hours. He says Passport Parking is helping to alleviate that problem.

Deadwood History Dinosaur Workshop

Nov 21, 2014
Courtesy Deadwood History, Inc.

If you’ve ever wondered what Loch Ness, Scotland and Deadwood, South Dakota have in common, you may be able to find the answer this weekend. The Adams Museum is hosting Deadwood History’s Dinosaur Workshop this Saturday where the main focus has a very famous cousin in the Scottish Highlands.

Sightings of a large water creature in Loch Ness considered to be an ancient – and extinct – plesiosaur have been circulating in Scotland since the seventh century. And though many doubt the existence of “Nessie”, there’s no question that a rare plesiosaur fossil resides in the Adams Museum.


The South Dakota Center for Enterprise Opportunity is holding its annual “Women in Leadership” series. As part of the programming participants are filming YouTube videos to learn to use social media as a tool to promote their business or other topics they feel passionate about.

Although the legend of Deadwood has endured, its days as a rough, mining town lasted for a relatively short time. Deadwood businessman and mayor W.E. Adams played an important role in preserving Deadwood’s early history and setting the stage for making the town a tourist attraction.

Among those who read newspaper articles about the Custer Expedition’s discovery of gold in the Black Hills were Moses and Fred Manuel. They arrived in the area in late 1875 and after a winter of prospecting, found gold in an outcropping of rock, three miles “over the hill” from Deadwood.

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.

Victoria Wicks SDPB

The popular television drama Criminal Minds follows a team of FBI behavioral analysts from Quantico, Virginia as they assist in criminal investigations. Greg Vecchi was a member of the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit. He left Virginia for a job with the FBI in Rapid City before retiring earlier this year.

Firearms And Black Hills History

Jun 18, 2014

Kevin Kuchenbecker, Historic Preservation Officer for the City of Deadwood, and Ivan Hovland, a volunteer at the Adams Museum and Deadwood History for almost 20 years, present "Firearms and Black Hills History" during Friday's Picnic on the Lawn at noon Mountain at the Historic Adams House in Deadwood.  Any study of western frontier history would be incomplete without some knowledge of the firearms the pioneers carried and used.  The intention of the presentation is to afford fleeting insights of the types of guns used in the settlement of the Black Hills.

Deadwood Gets Two New Table Games

Jun 17, 2014
Amy Varland

Deadwood is getting two new table games – Dead Man’s Hand and War Blackjack have been approved by the South Dakota Gaming Commission.

Deadwood’s Four Aces Casino General Manager Tony Sieber says War Blackjack is just like it sounds – a traditional game of black jack where players can also make a ‘war’ side bet against the dealer - the higher of two cards wins.

Sieber says the new games are a win/win for customers and casinos.

Amy Varland

A South Dakota gaming oversight commission adopted a policy to stop patrons from communicating via electronic devices while playing table games in Deadwood.

Executive Secretary of South Dakota’s Commission on Gaming Larry Eliason says the commission is making the move because there is currently no official policy regarding the use of electronic devices while playing table games – instead it has been left up to the house rules of individual casinos.

Deadwood Gaming Revenue Up

May 29, 2014

Deadwood’s April gaming revenue jumped almost four percent over the same time last year. Officials say a break in the weather after a long winter helped fuel the increase. Mike Rodman of the Deadwood Gaming Association says this is good news for the northern Black Hills.

Deadwood Makes Changes To Parking Payment Options

May 12, 2014


The old-west town of Deadwood is using modern technology to change the way visitors can pay for parking. 

Gone are the days of having to dig for coins to feed the parking meters in Deadwood.  Visitors can now use their smart phone to pay for parking with a credit or debit card instead of using coins.  Visitors just need to create an account with

Deadwood’s Chief of Police Kelly Fuller says before the Passport Parking option was available in Deadwood, many visitors complained that they could only pay for two hours of parking at a time.

Casinos in Deadwood may soon offer roulette, keno and craps. House Joint Resolution 1001 proposes an amendment to the state constitution to allow the authorization of the games through a ballot measure in November. Senator Mark Kirkeby speaks in favor of the resolution.

Business Drinking Hours Remain the Same in Deadwood

Mar 4, 2014

If you want to drink ‘til dawn in a Deadwood casino, you won’t get an OK from state lawmakers. State Senators defeated a measure that allows some businesses in Deadwood to serve alcohol 24 hours a day. House Bill 1123 applies to facilities in Deadwood that offer gaming, hotel rooms, and have an alcohol license. Supporters say Deadwood is losing revenue and this change would allow many main street businesses to reinvent themselves. But opponents argue it only promotes bad behaviors.

Senator David Omdahl spoke against the bill on the floor.

The State House passed a bill on Monday afternoon, allowing the town of Deadwood to increase its municipal tax. Lawmakers are split on this bill.