Deadwood aims to please Historic town offers Wild West appeal and more

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Deadwood’s historic Bullock Hotel built in 1895 is said to be haunted.
Deadwood gaming and signs
Kevin Costner’s Midnight Star casino, bar and restaurant.
Original location of Saloon No. 10 where Wild Bill Hickok was shot on Aug. 2, 1876.
Main Street in Deadwood, S.D. The entire town is a National Historic Landmark.
A bronze bust marks Wild Bill Hickok’s grave in Mount Moriah cemetery.

Deadwood aims to please
Historic town offers Wild West appeal and more

By Linda Miller

Deadwood touts itself as the town where the West still lives.

Meander down Main Street and if you can block out the sounds of modern-day gaming, it’s not too hard to imagine life in the 1870s when a lawman, scout and famed gunfighter changed this place for all time.

Wild Bill Hickok arrived in Deadwood, Dakota Territory, only a few weeks before he was shot in the back of the head on Aug. 2, 1876. The town’s past, present and future seem forever linked to the man.

That’s part of the appeal of this small, historic town deep in the Black Hills of South Dakota. It’s rooted in history from early gold rush days to a wild and promiscuous period (the last prostitution house closed in 1980) to a booming tourist site and inspiration for a short-lived HBO series.

In 1964, Deadwood became the first community designated a National Historic Landmark. That’s a lot of history to explore.

Hickok is buried in Mount Moriah cemetery overlooking the town. So is Calamity Jane. Each year, thousands of tourists maneuver the steep drive to see the graves.

It’s just one of many sites to check out. Actor Kevin Costner so liked the area when he was filming “Dancing with Wolves” that he now owns the Midnight Star casino, bar and restaurant. It’s filled with movie memorabilia.

Some 20 other casinos dot the town, many on the three-block Main Street where visitors will also find Miss Kitty’s Mercantile, Black Hills Gold Jewelry by Coleman, Gunslinger

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