Black Hills Knowledge Netowork

BHKN Digital Archives Collections

The Black Hills Knowledge Network partners with 13 local libraries and communities to aggregate historical documents and photos. They are hosted on a site called BiblioBoard which is a system used worldwide to store local library resources. (To view our How-To video for our archives, click here or scroll to the end of this page.) On this site, we house historical photos, documents, and books about the region's history, including items on the 1972 Rapid City flood, Native Americans, pioneers, the construction of Mount Rushmore, and more. We also aggregate local news stories on an indexing site called Diigo, which allows you to search by subject and receive results in a timeline fashion.

Included are photos, documents, and books about the area's history, encompassing the communities of Deadwood and Whitewood. Rapid City archives, Rapid City Public Library history, and Flood of 1972 items are also available. To access or learn more about these collections, explore the list below.

Current Biblioboard Collections:

Belle Fourche: A Black Hills Knowledge Network Collection includes photographs of every day life in the early twentieth century for residents of Belle Fourche.  The images capture farm life, livestock, Butte County farms, agricultural displays and competitions, youth groups, and much more.

Billboards: A Rapid City Collection contains photographs of billboards located throughout Rapid City during the mid and late 1960s.  The mid-century advertisements range from commercial services, food and drink, political campaigns, household goods, travel and local tourism, national phenomena, utilities, cars, and public spaces.

Black Hills Corporation: A Rapid City Collection offers photographs documenting the corporation from the 1950s to the present.  The images depict various aspects of the corporation’s 130-year presence in the Black Hills and features storefronts, facilities, field workers and executive staff, oil, coal, and power plant initiatives. 

Eastern South Dakota Photographs: A Rapid City Collection includes photographs of local industries, landscapes, aerial views, landmarks, and commercial facilities in Eastern South Dakota during the 1950s and 1960s.

Fitz and Startz Outbursts: A Rapid City Collection is an anthology of the monthly newsletter published by the American Legion Post 22 in Rapid City from 1935-1945. The Fitz and Startz Outbursts offers the views, concerns, and humor of veterans in both peacetime and war.

Holidays and Programs: A Rapid City Library Collection contains newspaper articles, documents, and photographs of community events and celebrations hosted by the Rapid City Public Library from the mid to late twentieth century.

Infrastructure Damage: A Rapid City Flood Collection documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  This collection contains photographs of the damage to infrastructure including bridges, building, vehicles, and roads.

Local Histories: A Black Hills Knowledge Network Collection contains archival material from the Deadwood City Archives, Deadwood Public Library, Oglala Lakota College Archives, Sturgis Public Library, and the Grace Balloch Memorial Library.  The various collections include nineteenth and twentieth century books, maps, documents, and photographs of historic towns in the Black Hills.

Minnilusa Pioneer Museum Collection

The Minnilusa Pioneer Museum Collection features archival material from the Minnilusa Pioneer Museum located within the Journey Museum in Rapid City, SD that includes diaries, letter books, and municipal records from the Black Hills throughout the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.

Pictures: A Rapid City Public Library Collection includes photographs of the 1972 construction of the downtown Rapid City Public Library.  The collection offers images of patrons, architecture, technology, and various features of the library.

Piedmont: A Black Hills Knowledge Network Collection documents everyday life for residents of Piedmont throughout the twentieth century.  The collection contains numerous photographs of farm life, railroads, mining, dinosaur excavations, local churches, Custer's Trail, and much more.

Politics and Industry: A Rapid City Collection features photographs, pamphlets, and reports of civic participation in South Dakota public policy.  The collection looks at issues and concerns in education, race relations, agriculture, healthcare, the Mountain Pine Beetle, and other community matters.

Postcards: A Rapid City Collection contains postcards depicting various South Dakota landscapes, Mount Rushmore National Memorial, the Needles, Spearfish Canyon, and other natural wonders. The collection also includes postcards and photographs of the 1934 Stratobowl balloon, gondola, and crew.

Powertech: A Rapid City Collection contains numerous legal documents, maps, and independent research surrounding the contemporary Powertech uranium mining case.  The collection includes official documents from the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary, the Oglala Sioux Tribe, and the State of South Dakota.

Rapid City Flood: Commercial Damage documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  This collection contains photographs of the damage to commercial properties and the subsequent reseeding efforts.

Rapid City Flood: Community Damage documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  The images capture the damage to public spaces and include the devastation of creeks and canyons, husbandry, vehicles, and various structures.  The collection also examines the effort to memorialize the 283 men, women, and children who lost their lives in the flood.

Rapid City Flood: Residential Damage documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972. The collection contains photographs of the destruction to residential properties such as houses, mobile homes, exposed foundations, and displaced structures.

Rapid City History: Black Hills, South Dakota offers photographs, newspaper articles, pamphlets, and reports that document the civil history of Rapid City and the surrounding Black Hills region during the twentieth century.  The collection also contains images of local arts, attractions, and recreation, including segments on Storybook Island and the Journey Museum. 

Rapid City Journal: 1930-1969 is an anthology of articles from the Rapid City Journal that reports on events from the failed Stratobowl mission in 1935 to the Cold War missile construction in the 1960s.

Rapid City Journal: 1990-Present is an anthology of articles from the Rapid City Journal that reports on events between 1978 and the present.  Topics range from the success of the Civic Center to the development of the Main Street Square.

Rapid City Journal: The Creation of the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center is an anthology of newspaper articles from the Rapid City Journal from 1970-1978. The collection documents the development of the civic center and sports complex and details the planning, financing, politics, and construction of the facility.

Rapid City Public Library News: A Rapid City Collection is an anthology of newspaper articles that documents the development of the library from 1905 to the present.  The articles report on various events, staff, and expansion throughout the twentieth century. 

Rapid City: Flood Victims: Flood Victims documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  The collection focuses on community efforts to memorialize the 238 men, women, and children who lost their lives in the flood and includes photographs, newspaper articles, biographies, and lists of the victims.

Reports & Correspondence: Rapid City Public Library Collection is an anthology of letters, annual reports (1923-2012), programs, and histories written throughout the twentieth century.  The collection contains letters between the Carnegie Corporation and library officials.

Reports & Media Coverage: A Rapid City Flood Collection documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  The collection includes official reports, photographs, newspaper articles, KOTA coverage, and correspondence.  The official reports feature government studies, agendas, critiques, and memos of the event.

Reseeding Efforts: A Rapid City Flood Collection documents the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.  The collection includes photographs, newspaper articles, and a KOTA transcript of initiatives to restore landscape damaged by the flood.  The images capture the process of preparing, drilling, shaping, and reseeding areas in and surrounding the city.

Spearfish Historical Society Programs

Spearfish Historical Society Programs contain a variety of local historical talks from local historians. Learn more about anything from the History of St. Onge, to the photography of Joseph and George Fassbender. 

Stratobowl: A Rapid City Collection offers photographs, newspaper articles, pilot logs, and scientific diagrams of the Explorer I and Explorer II missions during the 1930s.  The collection documents the missions, pilots, community response, and commemorative landmarks of the groundbreaking manned balloon flights.

The Lamplighter Newsletter: A Rapid City Collection is an anthology of the monthly newsletter published by the Black Hills Power and Light Company between 1968 and 1971.

Western South Dakota Photographs: A Rapid City Collection documents the diverse industries, monuments, people, and events of the region throughout the twentieth century. The images also capture the aftermath of the Rapid City Flood of 1972.

Whitewood: A Black Hills Knowledge Network Collection offers photographs of the town at the turn of twentieth century into its centennial celebration in 1977.  The images capture the development of the area’s agriculture, farm life, commerce, and railroad.

Wounded Knee: A Rapid City Collection includes newspaper articles, photographs, and documents of the 1973 American Indian Movement (AIM) protest and occupation of Wounded Knee, SD from the initial seizure to the aftermath and legacy of the event.  

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