Consider the primer architect in South Dakota and reverently referred to as "the Builder on the Prairie" Wallace Dow's stone of choice was Sioux quartzite; mined her in Dell Rapids. Dow is responsible for the construction of six buildings in Dell Rapids. The First Stone School House(1885), the Cooley Block (1885), the Grand Opera House (1888), the Augustine Johnson Block (1888), the First National Bank (1889), and the St. Peter Lutheran Church (1902).
A Combination of weather, skill, and resources shaped Dell Rapids' downtown. In 1888, a large fire burned up downtown Dell Rapids. The fire was devastating to the community and to guarantee it wouldn't happen again, the city passed an ordinance. This new ordinance required downtown buildings to be "built of durable construction." Luckily, Dell Rapids had all the durable construction materials they could ever need right next door in the mine filled with rose Sioux quartzite.
Thanks to Wallace Dow, and the abundant availability of Sioux quartzite, Dell Rapids was able to rebuild a beautiful downtown that would last forever.
From the Dell Rapids Community Guide