Western Life

Solomon Star

Solomon Star was a famous politician and businessman in the late 1800s and early 1900s. He was a German-American businessman who turned into a politician in Deadwood South Dakota. He was honest, influential and had a strong character who is included in the leaders of America due to his work and time he gave to the country

Solomon Star, also called Sol Star, was born in Brava, Germany and moved to Ohio when he was 10 years old. In 1976, he and his partner Seth Bullock were attracted to the fortune of Deadwood and started a hardware store. This was because of the beaming business there and the gold rush in the area. They purchased from men like Al Swearengen and opened the office of Star and Bullock which was an office of auctioneers and commission merchants. Later, they expanded to livestock and even franchised in various other cities.

The two men contributed heavily to the economic development of the region. They convinced the rail road commission of Missouri to build a track through their land. They then offered free lots to those who were willing to move where the check post was created and ultimately ended up winning the county seat. The town they founded was called Belle Fourche and at that time it became the leading and the largest railhead for livestock in the US.

Between 1877 and 1917, Star served as the mayor, post master and town councilman of Deadwood. He held the office of mayor for 5 terms which lead a local producer of tobacco to name one of his products after him. He was an officer of a Masonic Temple, a Knight of Pythias, and supported organisations like the order of red men which were working in favor of equality for all working men. He was a prominent and strong member of the Jewish community in Deadwood and was known for his generosity, giving to needy families in Russia and Europe.

Image: Gary C. Tognoni / Shutterstock.com

However, a scandal was raised claiming misappropriation of government money while he was postmaster. This caused a lot of trouble in the community and ultimately Star stepped down from his position. Later, he was acquitted from the crime and did no wrong. He then tried to rebuild his image as a good, hardworking and honest citizen of the community.

Star’s funeral was the largest and grandest funeral in Deadwood. Star’s body was transported to St. Louis where he was laid to rest in Mount Sinai Cemetery.  Star was an intriguing, honest and good man that led the American people in Deadwood. His contribution to the economic status of the country at the time is exemplary and his good nature of helping people around him showed people the kind of leader he was.

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