Monday, March 03, 2014

Marker Man

Over 25 years ago, a great man by the name of Bruce Blake took up an unusual hobby. Driven by a love of history, and of storytelling, Bruce began to research some of the local history of southeastern South Dakota, which he then recorded on roadside historical markers. That quarter century of effort has culminated in the placement of over 160 historical markers throughout Minnehaha County.

Pictured here are Alex and Nick with one of Bruce's historical markers. This one is located in downtown Sioux Falls right across the street from the Holiday Inn, formerly the site of Fort Dakota:

This marker has special meaning to my boys, since Bruce dedicated it in their honor by inscribing their  names on the reverse side.

I met Bruce in the early 1980's while he was dating my mother. He was there to see me off in 1982 when I departed for the Navy, and he has been there for me and my family ever since.

This is a shot of Bruce, myself and my Mom at my graduation from the University of South Dakota in 1993:

Bruce holding my son Nick shortly after his birth in 1997:

In 2010, Bruce was inducted into the South Dakota Hall of Fame for his historical work and other contributions to the state of South Dakota:

This month, Bruce, or as some call him, Marker Man, will be publishing a 550 page book that documents his 25 years of historical work. The book will be called Twelve Thousand Years of Human History: As Recorded on Historical Markers in Minnehaha County, S.D.

We are so proud of Bruce and his accomplishments. But more than that, we are honored to have been a part of his life during this magnificent journey. Congratulations, Marker Man, we love you.