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Aladdin, Wyoming-A Coal Mining History and Custer


4-27-17

Aladdin, Wyoming has only 15 residents currently,  up to 500 when coal mining was done here. It has a charming General Store.  This tiny town is also for sale for $1,500,000. We stopped by the store, it attracts people from all over.

We also paid a visit to the nearby Coal Tipple. a structure built to assist in the mining.  It was built in the late 1800’s. After parking in the lot, we walked up the path leading to the top.

Plaque near entrance.

The tipple is on your left. We could hear some people talking at the top and we went up to investigate.

Almost to the top. This is where the fan housing was,this is on our left.

It turns out we happened upon a meeting by the Crook County Historical Society.  We met local historian and author Pam Thompson, also Treasurer Rodney R. Knudson and a couple of engineers.

The were discussing whether the tipple should be restored or torn down.  It was becoming unstable and if anyone tried to climb it, it could cause injury.  The fence around it is easily scalable by someone who wanted to get in. They were happy to talk to us fellow history fans from two states away and I recorded a message they had to our readers.

Pam wrote two books on the area,

Around Aladdin

 Sundance   co-author Rocky Courchaine.

It was a pleasure meeting all of them and we hope the coal tipple can be saved. The view at the top was great!

Behind us was a coal car and Hoist House building.

Other signs there.

 

Not far from here is the spot where the Custer Expedition was. We went to see the marker.

The picture in the sign.

Our visit to Aladdin was short but very educational.  Well worth the stop if you are in the area.

 

Wounded Knee, SD-A place of Sadness and Tragedy for the Sioux Indians


4-24-17   6:24 PM

Marina Raye-“Gift of Peace” 2015

After 15 hours on the road, we arrived.  At the top of a hill is the site of the massacre.

At the bottom by the road is a red sign describing it.

We drove up to the top of the hill on a rough dirt road and parked at the top.  The entryway is a brick arch.

A couple of Sioux ladies in a pickup truck drove up too a few minutes later. They greeted us and offered up jewelry and other handmade crafts for sale. Knowing that white people were the ones that caused them such pain, I felt it would be rude to not purchase something from them. I purchased a beautiful turquoise cross necklace for $20.

After they departed we looked around.  This site clearly in need of cleaning up and maintenance, but they have little money to do so.  In the center is a fenced-in area.  One monument inside this enclosure stands taller than the others.

As you can see, Chief Big Foot is listed at the top of this monument.  We found a marker for him about 5 miles from here, another resident of the area told us where.

We walked further into the cemetery,  this is the chapel.

Coming back around toward the entrance, it is time to depart.  We wished the many souls here peace.

We visited the Chief Big Foot site on our way out of the area.

We leave Wounded Knee. They will be in our prayers.

 

Mitchell South Dakota – World’s Only Corn Palace


4-24-17

One town we HAD to stop in was Mitchell, South Dakota.  See their visitor guide here.   Stop by the Visitor’s Center across from the Corn Palace. It’s the same building the gift shop is in.

Out front is a sculpture and a plaque. Photos by Al.

 

Corn is the theme of this community. It is even on the bottom of the lampposts downtown.

The World’s Only Corn Palace is a must-see for any visitor to this state. Of course we did! It has been a centerpiece of Mitchell since 1892, still looking brand new with recent renovations.

We arrived at 12:40 after leaving Madison at 5:30 AM. You could see it on your right as you approached downtown, the turrets reaching toward the sky.

The Corn Palace is an entertainment venue, inside is a large auditorium for shows. They were setting it up for a circus performance that  was going to take place that evening.

When you come inside the lobby, friendly volunteers welcome you and have some information available about the Corn Palace and other South Dakota attractions.  The columns inside even look like corn cobs.

On the main floor and the 2nd floor and displays and pictures of the Corn palace years ago. A plaque dedication the “new” Corn Palace upstairs.

The LED lights add an elegant accent above the entrance.

The pictures outside are new every year and are made of corn and other agriculture of South Dakota.  These pictures are on the front of the building.

These are on the right side of the building. Here is this year’s pictures, beginning with Elvis, the largest picture. Then the 5 smaller ones just right of Elvis (click on image to enlarge).

Across the street is the corn palace gift shop and mall and a chance to get a great selfie like we did.

 Stop at the Corn Palace, you will have a great time!