From Lewis and Clark to the Future
The first homestead was filed on Spirit Mound in 1868. A pioneer recalled that looking north from the top of the mound, he could see only one tree. But the mound changed tremendously during the next 100 years. Settlers established two farmsteads, planted groves and divided fields with barbed wire. Land along the creek was pastured and a feedlot operated on the eastern slope. The prairie habitat disappeared, except for a five-acre remnant on the western side.
Preservation and restoration also came slowly. In 1986 a local group incorporated the Spirit Mound Trust, dedicated to saving the mound as a public resource.
The Trust's determined pursuit of this vision, under its long-term president, Larry Monfore, along with the Lewis and Clark Expedition bicentennial, led
Spirit Mound Historic Prairie will be a permanent resource for those who wish to honor our history and to enjoy the biological richness of the tallgrass prairie. Recreating the prairie primeval may be impossible, but will always be the project partnership's goal.
INSET - Larry Monfore 1939-2003
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Environment • Native Americans • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Lewis & Clark Expedition series list.
Location. 42° 52.053′ N, 96° 57.332′ W. Marker is near Vermillion, South Dakota, in Clay County. Marker is on State Highway 19 0.1 miles north of 312th Street, on the left when traveling north. The sign is one of several at a small asphalt pull-off loop road with a sign stating "Welcome to Spirit Mound Historic Prairie". Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Vermillion SD 57069, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 11 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lewis and Clark Visit Spirit Mound (here, next to this marker); Lewis and Clark Were Here...and Here... (here, next to this marker);
More about this marker. This is one side of a 3-sided informational sign at the park.
Regarding From Lewis and Clark to the Future. Tallgrass prairie restoration efforts are being conducted in many locations along the Missouri River, such as at Spirit Mound. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, National Park Service, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture - Natural Resource Conservation Service are three of the principal agencies undertaking these efforts in the middle Missouri River region.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on January 14, 2011, by Rich Pfingsten of Forest Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 820 times since then and 9 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on January 14, 2011, by Rich Pfingsten of Forest Hill, Maryland. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.