Thursday, July 22, 2010

1880 Town.

When we were traveling on Interstate 90 in South Dakota we came across a great place to stretch our legs. Fact is, we could stretch them clear back to 1880 as we went walking down Main Street at 1880 Town.

Our Captain needed a nap, badly. So, I took the rest of the crew and we went exploring more than 30 original buildings, authentically furnished with thousands of unique relics.
Besides, it was an ultimate trip for the fans of "Dances with Wolves" film with Kevin Costner, where we could see all the movie props in the museum upstairs.

When Richard Hullinger bought 14 acres at Exit #170 back in 1969 he had no plans for an attraction. In 1972 a gas station was built along with forming an idea of an old west attraction. Later, an additional 80 acres were purchased.

About that time a movie company came to a small town nearby to film an 1880 era movie. A Main Street set was constructed from old buildings and a number of Indian relics and antiques were borrowed from Clarence Hullinger, Richard's father.

Winter set in and the filming was abandoned. The movie company returned home giving the Main Street set to Clarence for the use of his artifacts. The movie set was moved to the 80 acres and the 1880 Town was born.

Along with the beginning of 1880 Town began years of collecting what is now an authentic 1880 to 1920 era town from buildings to contents. Clarence and Richard have kept historical value on equal balance with public appeal, choosing buildings that are not only interesting to look at but are also historically correct for an early South Dakota town.
So you can imagine what kind of fun the kids and I had. The girls were running around and Evan was trying to keep up with them. We visited a Barber Shop, a Saloon, Jail Cells, a Dentist, a Grocery Store, a Hotel, a Church, a Post Office, a Train Station and the Train,a Fire Station and more. All the buildings were open and we could really get the taste of the era.
With a nice break from driving we were ready to move on.


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