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23 April 2024
Alan Morris in Saloon 10, Deadwood, South Dakota.

I went to look around Deadwood, South Dakota, after our tour coach stopped at our hotel in Lead. We were given 20 minutes to rest, and our coach driver offered to drop us off in Deadwood.

Deadwood.

I had wanted to go to the   Mount Moriah Cemetery where both Wild Bill Hickok and Calamity Jane had been buried, but it was unreachable due to a local mudslide when I was there, and I couldn't visit it. Instead, I went for a walk along Main Street in   Deadwood.

Most of the street was taken up by casinos, bars and restaurants. I walked along until I found the bar, Saloon 10, that claimed it was the bar where Wild Bill Hickok was shot. In reality, the actual bar is no longer there and the replica is on the opposite side of the street from the original. There is a marker showing where the original saloon used to be.

Saloon 10 is quite a nice bar, and I had a meal there before posing for a photo in my Arsenal shirt under a memorabilia wall in the bar. After taking my photo, I had a game of pool in the pool hall before setting off to catch a bus back to the hotel. Luckily for me, as I sat at the bus stop, some other people from the tour group saw me, and we all jumped in a taxi together and returned to the hotel. Once back at the hotel, I had a few beers in the bar before bed.

History of Deadwood.

Settled illegally in the 1870s on land granted to the Lakota people in the 1868 Treaty of Fort Laramie, Deadwood was named by early settlers because of all the dead trees around its gulch. Its heydey was whilst the gold rush in the black hills was on. Wild West figures such as  Wyatt Earp, Calamity Jane and Wild Bill Hickok were all known to have spent time there. Wild Bill Hickok was killed there.

Jack McCall shot Wild Bill in the back of the head while playing poker. The hand of cards he supposedly held at the time of his death has become known as the dead man's hand, two pairs of black aces and eights.

  Photos from Deadwood.