Paha Sapa: Sacred Land
For thousands of years, before mountain men, before Custer, before gold, and before Europeans made their way west, Native Americans called Paha Sapa (the Black Hills) their sacred land. Celebrate the history, culture, and ongoing achievement of the people who first called this region home.
Sioux History Collection at the Journey Museum: Interactive exhibits and recordings provide an oral history and storytelling approach to the last 200 years of Lakota history.
Prairie Edge Trading Company and Galleries: Find the best in Native American art, crafts, beadwork, and music in this stunning facility.
Tatanka: Story of the Bison: A dramatic sculpture of 14 life-sized bison, cascading over a cliff, pursued by three Native American hunters, marks the entrance of Tatanka. Interactive displays and Native American interpreters demonstrate how the Lakota people depended upon the bison for food, clothing, and shelter. Learn the history of this magnificent plains animal and explore its relationship to Native American culture.
Crazy Horse Memorial: Lakota Chief Henry Standing Bear and sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski reached an agreement in June 1948 to carve a monument in the sacred Black Hills to show white people that Native Americans had great leaders, too. Crazy Horse, a Lakota leader who never signed a treaty with Washington DC, was selected for the honor and the Memorial was begun. Today the complex includes a museum and a cultural center that hosts native artisans during the summer.
Art Galleries: Look for Native American art at galleries throughout the hills. Visit the Warrior’s Work & Ben West Gallery and the Sandy Swallow Gallery in Hill City, The Shaman Gallery in Hot Springs, and the Heritage Center at Red Cloud Indian School on the Pine Ridge Reservation.
Powwows: Native American tribes gather from across the country to celebrate their cultural traditions at powwows, held throughout the region all summer long. Enjoy the flash of color and movement that is the grand entry. Listen to the drums and watch the fancy, jingle, grass, and traditional dances. Taste the best Indian tacos (Indian fry bread with taco toppings).
© Laural A. Bidwell from Moon Mount Rushmore & the Black Hills, 1st Edition