Summer Tours and Programs at Heritage Park

Berdahl-Rolvaag House Sign

Event Details


Date: August 5, 2017

Times: Saturday program August 5; open Sundays from 2-4 p.m. through August

Location: Heritage Park is south of 33rd Street between Grange and Prairie avenues

The historic buildings in Augustana's Heritage Park are open for tours. Docents at each building will be available on Sundays from 2 - 4 p.m. through August. The public is welcome and the visits are free.

The four historic buildings will also be open for this special event:

  • Saturday, August 5, from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. At 10:30 a.m., Greg Olsen will present the hour-long program: “The Life of the Common Union Civil War Soldier” at Beaver Creek Church.
  • Past Events:
    • Saturday, June 3, at 10:30 a.m., Rev. Dave Johnson presented the hour-long program: “Theodore Roosevelt and South Dakota” at Beaver Creek Church.
    • Saturday, July 1, from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. At 10:30 a.m., Bill Hoskins presented the hour-long program: "Norwegian Civil War Veterans of Minnehaha County" at Beaver Creek Church.

The Nordland Heritage Foundation is the organization dedicated to the preservation and the sharing of the historic buildings in Heritage Park, located south of 33rd Street between Grange and Prairie avenues.

About Heritage Park

Heritage Park is a collection of historic Great Plains buildings dating from the late 19th to early 20th century.

  • The Beaver Creek Lutheran Church is one of the oldest churches established in Lincoln County. It was completed in 1892 in LaValley Township east of Sioux Falls. The architectural style is Vernacular Gothic Revival, which attempts to combine European attributes with the prairie experience. The church is made almost entirely of wood, the main building material available on the prairie at the time. As the rural population declined, the church's congregation voted to close its doors in 1978. It was then offered to Augustana and was moved to its present location in Heritage Park in 1985.
  • Photos of Heritage ParkThe Berdahl-Rolvaag House was named for the Berdahl family who built it and for author Ole Rolvaag, whose novels "Giants in the Earth," "Peder Victorious," and "Their Fathers' God" tell the stories of Norwegian immigrants who came to the area in the 1870s. Rolvaag, a 1901 graduate of the Augustana Academy in Canton, married Jennie Berdahl while she was living in this house with her parents. The house is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
  • The Eggers School House is an example of early South Dakota educational facilities. The school was built in 1909 on an acre of land near Renner Corner. After serving as the daily social gathering place for an average of 15 students for nearly 50 years, only four children were enrolled in 1957. The school eventually closed and was purchased and preserved by James Wehde, a former student at the school.
  • The Rolvaag Writing Cabin, in which the best-selling "Giants in the Earth," called a "moving narrative of pioneer hardship and heroism," by Atlantic Monthly, was written between September and October 1923, was a gift from the Rolvaag family. It was moved from its original home in northern Minnesota with help and planning from the U.S. Forest Service.

Heritage Park

Heritage Park is located south of 33rd Street between Grange and Prairie avenues.