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High Plains Western Heritage Center, Spearfish, SD


Discover the heritage of the Great Western Plains as you travel back in time aboard one of our High Plains Western Heritage Center excursions. The nonprofit organization was built in remembrance of the old west pioneers and American Indians across South Dakota, North Dakota, Nebraska, Wyoming and Montana. It is home to the five-State Regional Museum, western artifacts, western art, live animals and family history displays. Enjoy 20,000 square feet of exhibits, attractions and history in the scenic plains of the West.


High Plains Western Heritage Center - Then and Now


The High Plains Heritage Center was started by Harry Blair and Edgar Gardner in the 70s.Two passionate ranchers worried the story of settlement in the High Plains would cease to exist.Through donations and other efforts, the ranchers were finally able to buy the property that would soon become the central educational and cultural center of the Western Great Plains. The Center’s doors opened to the public on September 1, 1989.



Explore the many indoor exhibits featuring western artifacts, the active 200 seat theatre located in the center of the Heritage Center, the Transportation Room and other outdoor displays. As the hub of cultural arts and education, the High Plains Western Heritage Center is a place where everyone can get in touch with their western roots.


Exhibits at High Plains Western Heritage Center

Delve into cultural presentations that honor pioneering, cattle and sheep ranching, rodeo, transportation, American Indians and mining and uncover authentic, western art, artifacts and Native American exhibits that tell the stories of the five states.


Transportation Room

See what transportation used to be like in the High Plains Transportation Room. From the spectacular Spearfish Stagecoach to buggies and sleighs, you can learn about the way people traveled around the five plains states in the days of the Wild West.


Outdoor Displays

The High Plains Western Heritage Center sits on 40 acres of scenic land with exciting outdoor displays. The spring brings wild flowers and fresh, green grass making it the perfect time to visit the Center’s outdoor attractions.  Explore the authentic one-room schoolhouse and see how children learned and played, the cozy log cabin and antique farm and ranch equipment.


The Stagecoach

The Spearfish to Deadwood Stagecoach located in the Transportation Room is an important part of western history you don’t want to miss out on. This remarkable stagecoach ran between Spearfish and Deadwood until 1913.


Longhorn Steers

The Longhorn Steers who live on the land of the High Plains Western Heritage Center can be easy to overlook, but watching this magnificent breed of cattle is a fun way to complete your High Plains adventure.