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Historic Keystone
Walking tour

Historic Keystone Walking tour

Home to the Carrie Ingalls Collection

Head to Keystone to enjoy the free walking tour of all the historical locations, including parts of the Ingalls family history (Little House on the Prairie Series). 

Visitors can follow the numbered signs and follow their map while reading about the history of one of the fastest growing boom towns in the Hills. Children that finish the tour may visit Halley’s Store and Big Thunder Gold mine for a free gift! 

Additionally you can receive two stamps at two different location for your Laura Ingalls Wilder All Sites Tour Passport

Laura Ingalls Stamp
schoolhouse stamp

Historic Sites:

  1. BOARDING HOUSE – Originally built in the 1890’s for Henry Loomis and family, one of the numerous blacksmiths in Keystone. It later served as the Goodyear Hotel and a boarding house for Mount Rushmore workers. 
  2. ED HAYES HOME – One of the original homes in Keystone, built in the 1890’s for Ed Coad and family. 
  3. BIG THUNDER GOLD MINE – Registered as Reed’s Placer Claim and the Gold Hill Lode in 1892 by two German immigrants August Engle & Fred Sierth (Formerly the Krupp Tunnel.) 
  4. UPHAM SALOON – Built in the 1890’s, the Upham Saloon was one of many saloons in Keystone’s early history. It was destroyed in a mysterious fire in 1908. 
  5. Hayes & Hayes – Two Brother, Johan & Patrick Hayes opened a double-wide mercantile store on this site in 1895. 
  6. FRANKLIN HOTEL – Built in the early 1890’s and was owned and operated by William and Jennie Franklin. Bill Franklin was also known as “Rocky Mountain Frank.”
  7. MCDONALD MOTEL – The hotel was considered a luxurious hotel in the mid 1890’s. They advertised, “The rendezvous for the smartest people in the West.” The south half housed the Harney Peak Bank, later known as the Keystone, Bank, the on e and only bank in Keystone until it was destroyed by fire in 1921. 
  8. T.G. HOY & CO. – Tom Hoy survived three fires and outlasted several pharmacies. He operated under the license of his father-in-law, Andrew Marble. The latter died in 1924, the last registered pharmacist in Keystone. 
  9. ICE HOUSE – From the first official Forest Service Ranger Station in the Black Hills located on Box Elder Creek three miles South of present day Nemo South Dakota by Steamboat Rock. Moved to this location in 2004. The two story “Sullivan Drug Store” building was at this location and the one-story “City Meat Market” was to the South of the drug store. 
  10. DOCTORS OFFICE – This office was built as a satellite office for Dr. Eugene B. Hultz a physician from Hill City. 
  11. BLACKSMITH SHOP- A photograph of the first automobile introduced in Keystone in 1909 is displayed on the site of the blacksmith shop in Keystone owned by “Peg Leg” or “Peggy” Haase, a one legged horseshoes (farrier). 
  12. THE HOLY TERROR MINE – Founded on June 28, 1894, perhaps the richest gold mine in the Southern Hills. Named for Franklins wife. 
  13. HALLYES STORE – It is the oldest continuous business in Keystone. Built in 1895 as the Keystone Trading company as a general mercantile store. 
  14. HISTORIC KEYSTONE ICEHOUSE – Built in 1935, the ice house stored ice taken from a local pond in the winter and sold in the summer months. 
  15. BIVOUAC AREA- The 4th Calvary from Fort Meade camped in this area in the 1930s. Historic Homes built in the 1890’s as seen as they appeared in 1930s. 
  16. HISTORIC CLIFFORD HOUSE – Built circa 1898. Current home of Don “Nick” Clifford, the last living Mount Rushmore Worker, and his wife, Carolyn. 
  17. LOG SCHOOL HOUSE – This original log schoolhouse was built in the early 1890’s. Miss Mary Wheelock taught 40 students here in 1894-95. 
  18. KEYSTONE SCHOOL – Built with Victorian architecture in 1899, at a cost of $10,000 for 300 students. It served as a schoolhouse until 1988. Now the Keystone Historical Museum featuring Carrie INgalls’ memorabilia and the Keystone Area Historic Society Collection. 
  19. CHURCH – The Keystone Congregational Church was built in 1896 at a cost of $2,000. It was used as a school before the Victorian schoolhouse was built. 

Storyboard Locations: 

  • Keystone mall at Holly Terror Coffee: Slaughter House Maintain and Mt. Rushmore T-Shirts: Pictures of Mt. Rushmore Workers. 
  • Red’s Chicken House & BBQ: Picture of Borglum’s 1st studio and the Grag of Jessee T information. 
  • Site of area’s first gift shop, history of Golden Valley and the Hesnard Museum. 
  • By mini gold: Site of 1930’s baseball field for Rushmore Memorial driller sna d picture of the baseball team. 
  • Mountain View Cemetary: This U.S. Forest Service land was deeded to Modern Woodmen of America by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1900. 
  • Battle Creek Lodge Original Building and site of the Keystone Volunteer Fire Dept. and Town Hall. 
  • Black Hills Souvenirs: Close to the original site of the Carrie Ingalls house which was destroyed by fire in1977. 
  • The Emporium: Story and picture of Lakota artist Orville Sr. “Paha Ska” Salway. 
  • Ruby House: Pictures of Wild Horse Harry Hardin, Old Dave McVay and Harney Hydraulic Gold Mining Co. Trestle. 
  • History of Carrie INgalls Swanzey and her life. inKeystone. 
  • Walking tour map. Pictures of John Manion, Dr. AT Roos and David Swanzey. 
  • Picture of the “Iron Horse” train engine. 
  • Holy Terror Antiques: Ride the 1901 Otis Elevator. It cam from the Homestake Gold Mine and reportedly the first of its kind west of the Mississippi.