Begun in 1881 as the first railroad in the Black Hills, the Black Hills & Ft. Pierre has played an important role in the growth of the Homestake Mining Company, the region's largest mining concern. Built, operated, and later leased by Homestake, the BH&FP functioned principally to transport mining timbers and fuel from the outlying forests to the burgeoning mining complex in and around Lead. The BH&FP was first routed along Elk Creek to Bucks Station. As the timber was later logged out, the railroad was extended - from Bucks to Piedmont in 1891, from Bucks to Este in 1898, and finally from Este to Stage Barn. The railroad's meandering route through the hills and canyons southeast of Lead distinguished it as one of the most dramatic and scenic early rail lines in the Dakotas.
GR: Fort Pierre