Horsedrawn parade June 3 in Ft. Pierre |

Horsedrawn parade June 3 in Ft. Pierre

The Board of Directors of Verendrye Museum is pleased to announce another historic event. We will be hosting South Dakota’s largest-ever All Horse Drawn Parade on June 3, 2017. This one-time event will kick off Fort Pierre’s 2017 Bicentennial Celebration Summer and be a gathering that will be recalled for generations.

We hope to draw attention to over 200 years of local, state and regional history. South Dakota history reaches back millenia when discussing Indian inhabitants. The first Europeans, however, to cross the Great Plains were the Verendrye Brothers, our museum’ s namesake. They claimed the region for France in 1743 by burying a lead plate here. The French explorers, and later Lewis and Clark in 1804, prompted trappers to penetrate the region.

The upper reaches of the Louisiana Purchase demanded exploration and Fort Pierre became a well-known port and trading center that connected people from all over present-day South Dakota. Rivers were the trade routes and Fort Pierre became the region’s hub. From all directions, South Dakota’s rivers connect the 66 counties of our great state and Fort Pierre still remains at the center of it all.

As trappers moved upriver, Joseph Laframboise established his trading post in Fort Pierre in 1817. Fort Pierre has been continuously occupied since then by Indians, trappers, gold miners, cowboys, homesteaders and laborers. Fort Tecumseh was constructed shortly thereafter, also within today’s city limits. Other forts -both fur trading and military- succeeded these. The spot on the map that we call Fort Pierre today was bigger than our city limits. We were all Fort Pierre at one time.

Please mark your calendars for next summer’s Bicentennial kick-off event on June 3. Verendrye Museum is seeking to recruit at least two wagons from every county in South Dakota. We want this to be an event celebrated by the entire state! If you are a teamster or know of a teamster in your area that might be interested in participating, please have them contact us at 605-319-6071.

–Verendrye Museum

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