© Author Adventures

Black Elk-Neihardt Park is a unique park and literary site in Blair, Nebraska, which highlights the collaboration which produced the Native American book, Black Elk Speaks.  The park has original art and sculpture inspired by this classic book.

Black Elk’s birthplace was probably in what is now the state of Montana.  He was a Lakota medicine man.  He is most known for spiritual ideas but other aspects of his life were both down-to-earth and surprising.  He married, had children, and at one point was a part of Buffalo Bill’s traveling show.  With the troupe, he traveled to England, even performing for Queen Victoria.

He is most remembered for his vision of human life which is infused with Native American spirituality. In a series of conversations, the Nebraska poet laureate, John Neihardt, recorded Black Elk’s beliefs and experiences.  The eventual result of these discussions was Black Elk Speaks, which is an important historical book, still very much in print.

Black Elk-Neihardt Park is the third stop on our Nebraska Trail!

Rebecca Blake Beech