Bad Humor at Bad River

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Bad Humor at Bad River

(images:jaredrenken/flickr) LaFramboise Island

South Dakota was admitted into statehood in 1889.  Pierre has been the capital since 1889 due to its geographical center.  Pierre is named after Pierre Chouteau Jr., a fur trader, who established Fort Pierre in 1832.  At just 14,000 residents, Pierre is the second smallest state capital.

(images:capitaljournal/flickr) Water from the Missouri River flows around -- and over -- LaFramboise Island on Tuesday, June 7, 2011. (Chris Mangan/Capital Journal)

Water from the Missouri River flows around — and over — LaFramboise Island on Tuesday, June 7, 2011. (Chris Mangan/Capital Journal)

Located along the Missouri River, Pierre houses La Framboise Island.  Connected to Pierre by a causeway, the island has seven to ten miles of trails, beautiful views of the river, and a diverse wildlife population.  Named after Joseph LaFramboise, the island was built at the mouth of the Bad River.  Joseph LaFramboise was a French fur trader who established the trading post in 1817.  It was the first permanent settlement in the region.

The island has a long history, even being named in the Lewis and Clark journals in 1804.  They referred to the island as “Bad Humor” because of a negative encounter with the Teton Sioux nearby.  As the explorers moved through the area, encounters with local tribes were tense and often hostile.  The Teton Sioux Chief demanded tributes for allowing the explorers to cross their territory.  The captains refused and the exploring was short lived.

Bad Humor may also describe some of the more recent encounters on LaFramboise Island.  Perhaps it is the angry Teton Sioux, still vehemently guarding their land, or the energy of the explorers who didn’t survive past the Pierre area.  No matter what it is, there is definitely something dark on LaFramboise Island.

Local Native Americans describe encountering a Native American spirit trying to warn hikers from the evil thing that lurks on LaFramboise Islands.  They say that the spirit appears to be a woman and is adamant that they should steer clear of the recreational park.  She is not the only “person” said to appear to guests.  Other reports have described apparitions of people roaming the island.  Some are seen in the trees and some appear on trails as hikers are exploring the island.  Others describe seeing a young child, panicked and asking for help.  As the hikers attempt to follow the child, they are led deeper and deeper into the woods.  No one has been able to reach or identify the child.

(images:sorakirei/flickr) EMF Detector

EMF Detector

People on the island describe feeling watched or hearing voices that do not appear to have a source.  There are unidentifiable, strange noises.  Paranormal investigators have explored the island and have found noticeable temperature changes in various areas.  Using an EMF detector, they have found concerning fluctuation in readings.  An EMF detector measures electromagnetic fields.  They detect fields emitted by electrically charged objects.  EMF spikes suggest a change in electrical current, or in paranormal investigations, the presence of a spirit.  Other occurrences involve seeing orbs in photos or being recorded in videos.

Island visitors might get more than they bargained for when visiting LaFramboise Island in Pierre, SD.  While offering a beautiful place for hiking, boating, fishing and exploring, there is something arguably dark lurking in the woods at the island.  Whatever it is, hikers should hope its in “Good Humor”, stick to the paths and hope to keep their wits.


Megan Borchert
Megan Borchert
Lover of all things unusual, Megan is a staff attorney for the state of South Dakota. When she's not stuffed in an office writing case synopses, you can find her at home with her army of Schnauzers, snuggled up with some strong wine and a good book.

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