Veteran member Vernon Davis provided the background as a group of morning folks gathered at the Spearfish City Park to begin the tour. Within the park area, there's an old stone grain storage building, artifacts from an old flour mill, a Pioneer Memorial that used to grace downtown Spearfish, and more. Not far from the entry to the park is the site of an old stockade that was built to protect local folks just after the Custer massacre.
Next on the itinerary was St. Onge and the burial site of Jimmy Irion (Iron), the gent hired by the Boughton and Beary Ranch to serve as a lookout against indians while men worked in the nearby hay fields. Irion and several other men were killed by indians on September 10, 1876, and buried atop the bluff where he had died.
A stop at the location of old Minnesela was next, and tour members were able to take a first-hand look at the structure believed to be the only surviving building from the once-thriving community that rivaled Belle Fource as a center of commerce in the area. That building is shown in the photo above at right, as tour members inspected it.
Although we don't have tour day photos from the planned stop at the Center of the Nation Museum and the adjacent log cabin that belong to "Buckskin" Johnny Spaulding, we did click some on a preview trip taken a few months ago. Those preview photos, along with a few others taken by Jerry Bryant during the July 10 tour, can be found in our Historical Marker Gallery. One of the most delightful spots on the tour route was Cox's Lake. We extracted the photo shown here from a neat panorama shot that Jerry Bryant took on the day of the tour. It's in the gallery, too. The lake is along the route taken by the Colonel Nelson Cole Expedition of 1865. You can see Crow Peak in the background at right, as Vernon Davis shares information about this site.
As others provide more information -- and any photos -- we'll add them to this location.