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Mystery Photo No More
Jul 24, 2012
Update — the mystery has been solved!
Lots of you guessed that this was the Odd Fellows Home in Dell Rapids. We just spoke with Joan Rasmusson, owner of the former orphanage and nursing home, who verified it for us. She's in the midst of renovating the beautiful, historic structure. The old laundry equipment area has been converted into condos, and more improvements are planned. Not many of the structures pictured lasted throughout the years, but Joan mentioned that the apple orchard is still there.
Joan's no stranger to the renovation process. She was involved with restoring the Grand Opera House, a gorgeous 1888 theater in the Romanesque Revival style that is hosting plays, concerts and other events once again. She informed us that other Dell Rapids structures are being fixed up. That's exciting news for the northern Minnehaha County gem.
We recently unearthed a photographic mystery here at South Dakota Magazine. Back in 2001, Pat and Rose Mary Trask of Wasta, South Dakota sent us this picture, along with a plea for help:
Our community service club, (WTL for "Willing to Learn" — not "Women Tell Lies" — Club) was painting and cleaning our Elm Springs Community Hall when we found the enclosed historic photo. None of us knew what building this was so we hope you can help us identify it.
We didn't recognize this scene then and we don't now. Do you? The back of the photo is blank, but "Don Hoskins / Huron" is printed in white on the front. That's the only clue we can offer.