Mount Moriah Cemetery, established in 1878, is the final resting place of over 3600 individuals, including some of the West’s most famous legends, miners, madams, lawmen, politicians and even a pet parrot.
Shortly after the discovery of gold in Deadwood Gulch, thousands of people from all walks of life flocked to the northern Black Hills.
By 1876, there were an estimated 5000 people inhabiting the various mining camps in Deadwood Gulch.
Kevin Kuchenbecker, a historic preservation officer in Deadwood, is well-acquainted with the rich history of the old mining town.
“Deadwood was founded in 1876 with the discovery of gold,” said Kuchenbeker. “We were actually trespassing on Native lands, so it was part of the Treaty of 1868, but with the advent of finding gold in Deadwood Gulch, it became a boomtown, a mining town.”
One notable landmark in Deadwood is Friendship Tower which was built in 1919 to commemorate the death of Theodore Roosevelt.
Seth Bullock, a prominent citizen of Deadwood, was close friends with President Roosevelt. When Roosevelt died, Bullock lead the Black Hills Pioneer Society in the construction of Friendship Tower. The tower was the first monument in the country to honor the fallen president. From the top of Friendship Tower, visitors can enjoy views of three different states— South Dakota, North Dakota and Montana.
“It’s a hidden gem in many ways,” said Kuchenbeker. “And we do have some wayfinding signs going out to that, but I do encourage our visitors and our local residents to get out there. It’s a beautiful hike and beautiful scenery.”
For more information, visit the Deadwood website here.