1,000 firefighters arrived within the first hour of the fire.
1,000 firefighters arrived within the first hour of the fire.
Black Hills Corporation photo
September 15, 2016

1959 Deadwood Fire

A blazing forest fire burned on the northwestern outskirts of Deadwood on September 8, 1959. The wind-fueled fire quickly surrounded the city on three sides by early afternoon, as reported by Deadwood Magazine. The 1959 fire consumed 4500 acres and cost the city $3 million by the time it was extinguished.

The fire, which was determined to have been started from embers escaping a burn, traveled two-and-a-half miles in just one hour and twenty minutes. The city evacuated more than 4,000 people in a little over 30 minutes, according to an account by the Rapid City Journal. 

To read more about the history of Deadwood, visit the Black Hills Knowledge Network's resource page about the city.

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