[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive]. Bob Zuver, compiler?
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].
[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].

[Deadwood and Black Hills photo archive].

Deadwood, Black Hills, and other South Dakota locales, [ca. 1895]. 104 photos, printing-out paper, 4.5” x 3.5”, plus margins, mounted on 13 loose album leaves (10” x 12”). Many photos with manuscript captions in the margins.

A photo archive documenting gold-mining and fossil-hunting excursions in Deadwood and the Black Hills, South Dakota, undertaken by Nebraska engineer Bob Zuver and his company of men during the late-19th century; the archive also captures the town of Deadwood and the broader South Dakota scene.

The infamous town of Deadwood was illegally founded soon after Col. George A. Custer's famed 1874 Black Hills Expedition discovered gold in the region. Until 1876, the Black Hills remained a largely unknown territory for non-native people, being part of the Lakota Sioux reservation created by the 1868 Fort Laramie Treaty. The discovery sparked the Black Hills Gold Rush and brought about the founding—on Native American land—of the town of Deadwood in 1876 (located some 55 miles north of Custer City). Within little time, Deadwood grew to a population of about 5,000.

This archive documents mining and fossil-hunting trips undertaken in the region by Nebraska engineer Bob Zuver who worked at water works and electric light plants in Nebraska, and is pictured and identified in one image here. In 1895, Zuver and one Charles Hayward are recorded as having left for the Black Hills, where they went to spend the summer prospecting for gold in the Castle Creek area; both men being experienced prospectors. The Winter of 1896 also saw Zuver mining on the western slope of the Black Hills as well as Cripple Creek, Colorado. A number of images here are taken in mining areas in South Dakota where Zuver worked. He is known to have undertaken his various excursions with outfits consisting of a number of other men. Some of the individuals named here—Jim Kenyon, Fred Smith, George Swain, et al., appear to have been part of his company. A number of intriguing photos document fossil-hunting activities Zuver and these men undertook. One image shows two men “packing fossils” into a box, and another shot, taken in the Badlands, is captioned “a good place for fossils.” A photo captioned, “Loading Specimens,” shows men loading a wagon with boxes of fossils. The following passage from the article, “There's Beauty Inside Those Ancient Pebbles,” mentions Zuver and links him to fossil-hunting in both Colorado and Oatman, Arizona: “Until 1910 all of these [flint pebbles, which contained fossils and]…were carefully selected for uniformity of size were shipped from the Scandinavian countries where, reportedly, they were collected upon the sea coasts. In April of that year Bob Zuver of Oatman [Arizona] and Henry Lovin, who had stores in several mining camps and was known as the ‘Merchant King of Mohave County [Arizona],’ reported they had discovered flint pebbles along the Colorado, only a few miles away.” Since Zuver was not a paleontologist, it seems likely that he engaged in fossil-hunting out of personal interest or possibly for the curio shop trade.

The rest of the photos in this archive document individuals and locales in and around Deadwood and the Black Hills visited by Zuver, including Hot Springs, Fort Meade, Lead, and the Sioux Reservation. Subjects pictured include Deadwood street views showing horse-drawn vehicles and signs for a Black Hills Gold Jeweler and a shoe shop; cavalrymen at Fort Meade; homesteading families; a deserted log cabin (“there are thousands of them”); cowboy and ranch scenes; chuck wagons; views from the top of Mt. Harney (“highest point east elevation of the Rocky Mountains”); large parties of individuals riding in wagons; railway scenes, including and a mining railroad; roads leading to and from the Black Hills; portions of the Sioux Reservation; a lake near the summit of Mt. Harney; men riding on a Fremont & Elk Horn R.R. car, and so forth. A number of appealing images here feature youth of the region. One captioned, “Future 16 to 1 Voters [in] Lead, SD,” shows nine children standing on an elevated porch in front of the shop of sign and carriage painter J. L. Payne (his shop sign reads: “Sign painting, graining, paper hanging, lining, hard oil finishing, calcimining and carriage painting”). A man standing in the doorway may be Payne himself. One image pictures an affable, smiling boy named Roy (“A Western Kid”), who holds a lasso. Another image captioned, “ of the populace Finney, South Dakota,” shows three young women standing next to a carriage. Evocative captions include: “Breaking Camp, Indian Draw”; “‘A Schooner’ of the Prairee”; “Where the Great Spirit Dwells, Indian Legend of the Black Hills”; “Our Commissary Dept.”; “Prospectors Cabin”; “On the Cheyene Round-up”; “Boss of the Cheyene Round Up”; “Starvation Camp”; “Western Girls”; “Off for the Hills”; “A Gold Mine Plant, part of the Stamp Bills Homestake Mine”; “On Old Trail to Deadwood”; “Range Horses Fording the Cheyene”; “Some Sturdy Westerners & Effete Easterners,” and “Hoboes.”

An evocative photo archive of the Black Hills scene in the 1890s.

REFERENCES: Grafe, Ernest. The 1874 Black Hills Expedition at custertrail.com; Chadron Record (Chadron, Nebraska, 19 Apr 1945), p. 2; The Nebraska State Journal (Lincoln, Nebraska, 19 Apr. 1895), p. 5; “There's Beauty Inside Those Ancient Pebbles.” Desert, Vol. 15, No. 5 (May 1952), p. 14.

CONDITION: Images fair to good, some photos with losses or stains, but rich photo content; two leaves cleaved in half, but photos intact; boards chipped and worn.

Item #6545

Price: $3,950.00

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