Birth of a National Park - A National Park is Created

Photograph of Snowdrift Avenue with two cavers, one in the foreground and one in the background
Exploring in Wind Cave

NPS Photo

The land was withdrawn from settlement January 18, 1900. On September 12, 1902 Captain Seth Bullock, became the supervisor of Wind Cave and established rules that George Stabler and wife, Elmer McDonald and Peter Paulson had to follow as guides. A hotel concession also was granted to George Stabler and wife.
Historic black and white photograph of a young President Theodore Roosevelt
President Theodore Roosevelt

NPS Photo Archive

It Is Wind Cave National Park

December 12, 1902, the Hot Springs Star headlines read: It Is Wind Cave National Park: Congressman Martin wired E.T. Peirce Saturday saying “Wind Cave National Park bill passed the House today. It has already passed the Senate and will soon be a law.” Thus the good things keep coming for Hot Springs.

President Theodore Roosevelt signed legislation making Wind Cave a National Park on January 3, 1903. It would be more than 13 years before the National Park Service was established.


Last updated: February 21, 2018

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Mailing Address:

26611 US Highway 385
Hot Springs, SD 57747


(605) 745-4600

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