Sunday, September 2, 2012

in Deadwood Saloon No. 10 is a ten

Photo by Judy Wells.
Yes, Deadwood's famed Saloon sells T-shirts, jackets, caps and postcards.

Just before the fatal bullet. Photo by Debi Lander.
Yes, they perform regular re-enactments of the most momentous event to occur there, the fatal shooting in the back of lawman and folk hero "Wild" Bill Hickok, love of Calamity Jane.

Yet yes, it is not to be missed, a great place to while away a few hours over an ice cold adult beverage.

Debi and Judy, the Good Girls, drink in the atmosphere of Saloon #10. Photo by the bartender.
Sawdust added to the ambiance. Photo by Judy Wells.
 The Good Girls loved it, sawdust covered floor and all.

The chair in which Wild Bill sat when shot. Photo by Judy Wells.
The "death chair" is suitably enshrined over the front door.

Images of the infamous and historic events in the boom, bust, boom town's checkered existence cover the walls. The 21st century video-slot machines are tucked in the back room, their siren clangs rarely interfering with the Old West ambiance.

It's the stuff movies were made of and will take those of a certain age back to their childhoods.

Main Street Deadwood. Photo by Debi Lander.
Bulllock Hotel. Photo by Judy Wells.
It is surrounded by a town of quaint buildings, most given over to tempting the splurges of tourists. Given the close proximity to Sturgis, souvenirs for Harley Davidson fans predominate.

"The" event is everywhere. Photo by Judy Wells.
At night, the mostly empty casinos make Deadwood look and feel, well, dead, a far cry from the days portrayed by the HBO series.

Bill Hickok's grave. Photo by Debi Lander.
There are enough genuine touches to make it endearing though. We paid - $1 - a visit to Mount Moriah Cemetery where Wild Bill, Calamity and other colorful characters of their day are interred.

Mementos left for Wild Bill at his grave. Photo by Judy Wells.
They have many visitors. Around Bill's portrait head-topped monument, fans have left rocks and pebbles, miniature bottles of Jack Daniels, a cigaret and a bullet in addition to the more ordinary flowers.

Calamity's grave site. Photo by Judy Wells.
Calamity is buried, as was her wish, in the adjacent plot. Visitors have left her flowers and mementos as well, including a faded blue kerchief around the stem of the urn atop her marker.

Judy lingered there while Debi headed to the scenic overlook where she encountered a herd of deer.

Look up, walk up and you're there. Photo by Judy Wells.
We dined at Kevin Costner's restaurant; Diamond Lil's, not the much-praised and dearly priced gourmet establishment atop the building. It was fun chowing down surrounded by costumes the actor had worn in his many films.
Kevin's not there but his costumes are. Photo by Judy Wells.

Finally it was time to retire to our rooms at the The Lodge at Deadwood, sister property of Creekside in Custer State Forrest.
Debi's room at The Lodge. Photo by Debi Lander.

A good night's sleep and we were off to North Dakota and the northern Badlands.
On the road again. Photo by Debi Lander.

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