Charles L. Hyde devoted much time and energy to promoting the young town of Pierre. A true believer in the city, Hyde built five of the seven buildings in Pierre's historic commercial district along upper Pierre Street. The St. Charles Hotel was his crowning architectural achievement. Legislators, U.S. presidents, and celebrities all stayed at the St. Charles. The Grand Opera House, just down the block from the hotel, hosted performers from across the country. Enthusiasm ran into the law when Hyde was convicted of fraud for making exaggerated claims about what Pierre had to offer. President Taft pardoned Hyde before he did any prison time. Sponsored by the South Dakota State Historical Society, a Preserve America grant, and the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad Corporation.
19th-century pioneer settlement architecture is evident in the buildings along the Upper Pierre Street Commercial Historic District. Built between 1895 and 1909, many of the structures have Classical Revival details. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the district symbolizes Pierre's bustling commercial start.
Images courtesy of the South Dakota State Historical Society and Enid Hyde.