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“Best information on the Sioux People and the Buffalo's importance to their culture”

Tatanka: Story of the Bison
Ranked #7 of 39 things to do in Deadwood
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
sonora ca
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Best information on the Sioux People and the Buffalo's importance to their culture”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 24, 2012

Wow! Not sure where to start, so will start at the beginning. The staff at the entrance is welcoming and knowledgeable. Billy ( a Sioux) presents the most interesting and accurate picture of the past and present day Sioux culture. The Operations Manager and her assistants add to the experience at this must see attraction. The sculptures and other outdoor exhibits are, along with Crazy Horse Memorial Museum, the best we saw on a trip dedicated to learning more about Native American culture and spiritual practices past and present. We are most grateful for the courtesy and humorous banter of the staff.

Visited September 2012
3 Thank mike m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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247 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
99 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Wasted Time”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 23, 2012 via mobile

This is supposed to be the story of the bison. We got a lecture by Billy who obviously has some dislike of the white. He started his presentation by stating "I don't want to make you feel small (using his fingers to show about two inches), but...". He spoke about the Lakota and all the bad words the white use such as squaw and Navajo. He barely touched on the life and use of the bison and spent his time talking about how big the Lakota (7 feet) and the bison were before the white man came. He wondered why o one asks him any questions. I asked two and he was very blunt and walked away as he answered the questions. We were then rounded up and put in a room to watch Kevin Costner's speech at the grand opening of the museum. The museum is not much bigger than 12'x12. The sculptures outside are quite nice but overall this place is not worth the time to visit. Sorry, Kevin, nice idea bad choice with Billy. We know the whites did horrible things to the Native Americans. We can't fix the past but some of use want to learn about what actually happened in a positive, open arena.

9 Thank MooseTrax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OC, Maryland
Level Contributor
27 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Best stop on our vacation through the Black Hills”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2012

It is an eye opening experience learning about the history of the Lakota people. Lots of infromation, photographs and artifacts in the museum. Billy gave an excellent presentation talking about his Lakota ancestors, their way of life, and relationship with the bison. Very educational and interesting!! The sculpture in the outside garden was unbelievable - so large and lifelike. Staff was friendly and helped us pick out books to purchase based on what peaked out interest during the presentation. Picked up lovely handmade gifts - silver earrings and a bracelet - that were reasonably priced and beautiful for our daughters. Supposedly Kevin Costner reads the comments in the guest book so be sure to sign it. Allow at least an hour for the visit.

Visited September 2012
3 Thank Luv2TravelfromMD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Socorro, New Mexico
Level Contributor
87 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“Tatanka - A tribute to the Native American and the bison”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 10, 2012

Tatanka is nice. There are 14 bronze bison and three Native Americans on horse back. All are 1.33x larger than life and are shown charging over a small cliff. We did not take any tour to see Tatanka. Tatanka is a short distance north of Deadwood, SD on a paved road. There is an inside museum talk by a Native American and he explains a lot about their life. Following the talk, you can walk through the bronze figures and take pictures. See more at www.storyofthebison.com

There was a small food and beverage area but it was closed...probably too early in the season.

We enjoyed it.

Visited June 2012
Thank VLA-traveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
50 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“A untold part of history”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 9, 2012

We found the stop here with our kids to be worth it. You watch a brief movie about how the sculpture and museum came about through the vision of Kevin Costner and get to look at and even pick up indian artifacts in the main room. We also heard a 20 minute or so talk by a local Lakota, Billy. It was filled with fascinating information we never knew about Native Americans in the area. I think his talk really made the visit there worthwhile. Finally, we viewed the amazing sculpture outside. I wish there were more places in the country like this that taught us about our native people.

Visited September 2012
2 Thank krankn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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