Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Our Fall Vacation To South Dakota: Day 2, Part II: The Historic Adams House In Deadwood

 This is a continuation of a travel series to South Dakota.  To start at the beginning, go HERE.  The rest of the posts in chronological order are  HERE and HERE. 

I can't believe I haven't written a travel post since November.  I'm so sorry guys!  The holidays just really overwhelmed me this year.  I have so much more to share from my fall vacation to South Dakota I'll be lucky if I get it all in before I leave on my spring vacation,  but I'm gonna try.  I'm picking up this series exactly where I left off, in Deadwood.  If you missed that post, you might want to click the last link above and read it because this historic house that I'm writing about today is located in that city and it's always important to learn about the city the home is in.

Whenever we visit a city or town my husband and I love to tour at least one historic home.  Historic home tours teach us so much about the families that have contributed to the city and we also get more in-depth knowledge of the city through a home tour.

The Historic Adams House in Deadwood was built in 1892.  It is a Queen Anne Style with oak interiors, hand painted canvas wall coverings, and stained glass windows.

My favorite details of the structure of this old home is the large front porch, the brick foundation and first floor walls, and the corner turret and dome.

The Historic Adams House tells the stories of two of Deadwood's founding families:  the Franklin's and the Adam's Family.

The home was built by merchant/business entrepreneur Harris Franklin. He was a Jewish immigrant who made his fortune in wholesale liquor and gradually diversified into cattle, gold mining, and banking.  This home was unique at the time because it had all the modern conveniences like central heating, electrical lighting,  and indoor plumbing.

In 1920, the Adams family purchased the home.  W.E. Adams was a prosperous business owner in Deadwood.  He owned a store on Sherman Street that was the size of an entire city block and four stories tall!  He also was very active in the community, serving six terms as Deadwood's mayor and he made great improvements in the city's economy.  His largest contribution to Deadwood was the Adam's museum.  He financed the lot and construction of the building, which sat directly across from his city block store.

After W.E. Adams died in 1934 the house sat silent for more than 50 years.  This ended up being a good thing for historians because everything was left in tact when Adam's second wife left the home.  The furniture, decor, personal items like medicine, sheet music on the piano, books, even cookies were left in the cookie jar.  Because everything was left the same as when the Adams Family lived in the home, we are able to get a great glimpse into their lives in the early 1900's.

This is a garage on the side of the house.  It's obviously been renovated, but at one time probably served as a carriage house.  Now it is used as a small gift shop and also where you can buy your tickets for the tour.

They do allow photography inside this home, but it must be non-flash, so I apologize in advance for the poor quality of the photos.  Like most historic homes, they keep it very dark inside to preserve everything and without a flash, most of the pictures turned out grainy and blurry.

This is the first room on your left when you enter the home.  The doors have a stained glass transom.

Almost every room in this house has a fireplace.  This is the fireplace in the formal parlor where guests are entertained or the family would congregate.

The staircase is a beautiful oak and curved around to the top landing.  It is in full view right when you walk in the front door.

My favorite room was the music room which is located to the right of the front door.  It is so stunning not only because it located inside the turret, so it is round, but I loved the pink walls and I found the hand-painted floral design absolutely breath-taking.

Isn't this white marble fireplace gorgeous?

 Here is a close up of some of the detail of the crown moulding and floral painting.

Even the ceiling was painted in a delicate floral design.  Oh, it just pains me how difficult this must have been for the artist.  The detail is amazing!

This dark room was the office or study of the home owner.

The dining room, with a view into a small sun room added to the house at a later date.  Notice the gorgeous stained glass transom above the doorway?

This is the upstairs landing and hallway.  The end of the stairs leads to another staircase down to the kitchen.  I love the arched transom above it.'

Upon construction, the house had ten rooms.  This is one of the bedrooms.

One of the unique aspects I found about the bedrooms was that they all had their own bathrooms with the prettiest sinks I ever did see.  I loved this pink marble one with a floral basin.

This room also had a beautiful fireplace.

Another bedroom with yet another pretty sink.

Like most historic homes, the house is filled with personal photographs and journals of the people who inhabited the house.

The second family to inhabit this home suffered so much tragedy here.  In one year, they lost three loved ones.  W.E.'s wife, Alice got terminal cancer.  She went to visit her daughter in California who was seven months pregnant at the time.  Alice ended up dying in her daughter's home and it caused her daughter so much grief she went into premature labor.  Both the daughter and the baby both died. Isn't that one of the saddest stories you've ever heard?

Yet another beautiful marble sink with a old fashioned tub in the bathroom.

It is very rare to find an old fashioned kitchen in an old home as most kitchens are always remodeled for modern conveniences.  But because this house was abandoned for fifty years, the old condition complete with all the china and cookware was left in tact.  Gotta love the open shelving and farm house sink.  Now this look all back in style isn't it?

There was even an old stove and an ice box!

I loved this old farmhouse style kitchen!  I wouldn't change a thing (well, except for adding a modern stove and refrigerator).

Well I hope you enjoyed reading about the Historic Adams House.  Next week I will finish my tour of Deadwood with a stop at Mt. Moriah Cemetery:  another place where one can learn all about a town's history!

Have A Great Day!  Amy

Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE!


  1. A beautiful historical home with such great details! Love the room in the turret, those are always my favorites!

  2. Wow! What a beautiful home! We live near the Newport Mansions in Rhode Island and love to tour older homes to see how things have changed and what life was like back then.

  3. Hi Amy, I'm just like you in that I LOVE visiting historic houses. When I'm in the UK visiting family there's nothing I like better than going to National Trust Properties. The Historic Adams House looks fascinating, and yes isn't it great when you can learn so much about the families who lived there too. I loved your photos and they reminded me of the detail and flamboyance of days gone past - those sinks for instance! Looking forward to your next historical house tour. (Thanks for commenting on Lifestyle Fifty earlier ,from #MLSTL too) Sharing on SM :)

    1. Thanks so much for visiting! I can only imagine how spectacular the old homes in the UK are!

  4. What a gorgeous house. I love the detail that must have gone into everything - even the sinks! We also like to visit historic homes when we travel - it gives you such a great look into how life might have been. (Visiting from #MLSTL)

  5. The decor isn't really my cup of tea but I LOVE the frontage and that turret and the top floor walls are just beautiful. I love these stately old homes and the history that goes with them.
    Thanks for linking up to MLSTL - I've shared this on my SM :)

  6. I love to tour old homes. Isn't it funny though all of our high profile folks now live in homes that I doubt anyone will want to tour.

  7. What a trip down the history lane! This is amazing dear.
    Jessica |

  8. I really enjoyed this post, Amy! My husband and I are recently retired (only 6 weeks!) and just became full time rv-ers for the next few years. We left Illinois where we've lived most of our lives and are spending the first 4 months in Arizona to escape the cold. This spring we will make our way up to South Dakota seeing some sights along the way. I'll look forward to visiting Deadwood now because of your posts! And eventually I want to head to Savannah Georgia inspired by your previous travel posts. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Sarah, I am thrilled to read comments like this. Travel posts require the most work of all the subjects I write about, and I often think of stop doing them. This encourages me to keep on writing. I love to inspire people to travel and to seek out other places other than Disney World or beaches. There's nothing wrong with those places for vacations, I've certainly enjoyed them myself, but there is so much more in this big beautiful world to see!

  9. What a wonderful house, Amy. They sure don;t build them like that any more...
    Thank you for taking part in the Travel Tuesday meme.


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