Monday, September 14, 2009

The Courthouse Museum in Sioux Falls -- a Treasure!

The City of Sioux Falls is proud of it's past and offers a free, very interesting museum in the original Courthouse. Located downtown, there is plenty of parking and the museum is open daily.

Next to the entry is this wonderful old auto - the original Fawick Flyer. This car was designed and built in Sioux Falls by Thomas Fawick in a bout 1910. Apparently, this is one of the first 4 door, fice passenger car built in the USA. This is his actual car and has about 125,000 miles on it.
The museum has done a great job documenting this interesting car and its history. Apparently, President Teddy Roosevelt rode in this car when he visited Sioux Falls in the early 1910 era.

Not surprisingly, one room of the museum is devoted to agriculture -- specifically CORN! I did not realize the many different varieties of corn that exist and learned that the most common type of corn is the "dent" corn -- named for the small dent that appears at the top of the kernel when it has dried on the ear.

Corn husking contests were very popular in the early 1900's as evidenced by this special hat celebrating one of the biggest husking contests of all -- some 130,000 people attended this one! Hard to believe today that 130,000 folks would come to see people compete husking corn. I suspect we have missed something!

Sioux Falls was also known as a wedding destination (and for a short time, the divorce capitol of the country). One very moving display focuses on wedding gowns that were worn by specific brides of the past. This dress was worn in a ceremony in 1904 by the bride in the picture with her new husband.

I thought wedding dresses were white! Not in the past as shown by this dress from a wedding in 1884 with the couple in the picture. Amazing -- this is the very dress that was worn over 120 years ago.

Finally, we had to take in the display on Sioux Falls drive-ins of the past. We wished that some of these were still around so we could get a shake delivered by a car hop on roller skates! A great museum visit here in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

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