Western North Dakota

Fort Atkinson | Cantonment Bad Lands | Camp Barbour | Fort Berthold (1) | Fort Berthold (2)
New Fort Berthold (3) | Fort Buford | Cadell Village | Fort Clark | Confluence Camp
Fort Dilts | Fort Floyd | Heart River Corral | Fort Henry (2) | Camp Houston | Huff Village
Fort James | Jupiter's Fort | Jusseaume's House | Fort Kipp | Kipp's Post | Knife River Villages
Fort Lewis | Fort Lincoln (1) | Cantonment at Little Missouri Crossing | Fort Manuel Lisa (2)
Fort McKean | Fort McKeen | Fort Makay | Fort Mandan (1) | Fort Mandan (2)
Fort Manuel (1) | Molander Village | Fort Mortimer | North Cannonball Village
Primeau's Post | Fort Rice | Fort Rice Village | Fort Sauerkraut | Camp Seclusion
Cantonment at Sentinel Butte Station | Post at Standing Rock Agency | Fort Stevenson
Camp Sully | Tilton's Post | Fort Union | Fort Vanderburgh | Fort William (1)
Fort William (2) | Fort Yates

Eastern North Dakota - page 1


Last Update: 12/MARCH/2016
Compiled by Phil and Pete Payette - ©2016 American Forts Network

Fort Yates
(Standing Rock Indian Reservation)
(1874 - 1903), Fort Yates
This fort replaced Fort Rice, and was replaced in turn by Fort Lincoln (2) in Bismark. Originally named Post at Standing Rock Indian Agency until 1878. Although abandoned by the military in 1903, it remained the headquarters for the Indian Reservation. The fort's original Guardhouse (1870's) still exists at Cottonwood Street and Proposal Ave., although it is not open to the public. Located nearby is the Sitting Bull Gravesite (1890), near Yates and Dike Streets. The Lewis and Clark Expedition spent the night near here in 1804.

North Cannonball Indian Village
(North Cannonball Archaeological Site)
(unknown dates), near Cannon Ball
Ruins of a prehistoric fortified Mandan village on the north bank of the Cannonball River. Explorer John Evans named the site Jupiter's Fort in 1796, for some unknown reason. The earthen remnants of the ditch and several bastions have been badly disturbed over the years by modern agriculture.

Fort Rice Indian Village
(Lower Fort Rice Archaeological Site)
(unknown dates), near Fort Rice
A prehistoric fortified Mandan village.

Fort Rice (State Historical Site)
(1864 - 1879), Fort Rice
A crude log and earthen fort established by General Alfred Sully, located opposite the mouth of Long Lake Creek. It was rebuilt with adobe in 1868. Replaced by Fort Yates. Two blockhouses were once restored, but were burned down in 1977. No remains. Interpretive markers on site.

Cadell Indian Village
(Cadell Homestead Archaeological Site)
(unknown dates), near Fort Rice
A prehistoric fortified Mandan village that appears to have been larger than the Huff Site (see below).

Huff Indian Village (State Historical Site)
(1480 - unknown), Huff
A fortified Mandan village containing about 100 houses. Site has been excavated.

Fort Abraham Lincoln (1) (State Park)
(1872 - 1891), Mandan
Originally an infantry post known as Fort McKeen (or McKean), it was located on a bluff at the mouth of the Heart River. Late 1872 it was moved to the flatland and renamed, becoming primarily a cavalry post although some infantry companies were still stationed on the bluff for a time. This was the headquarters of the U.S. Army's 7th Cavalry before they were wiped out at the Battle of Little Bighorn (1876). The Fort McKean site has three 1930's CCC reconstructed blockhouses. The Fort Lincoln site has the CCC reconstructed 1873 Custer House and several other buildings, including the barracks and post commissary (museum). The fort was abandoned after the Northern Pacific Railroad was complete and the Sioux were settled on reservations. Settlers then dismantled the post for the lumber. Became a state park in 1907. Admission fee. The Lewis and Clark Expedition spent the night here in 1804 at an abandoned Mandan village (1575 - 1781). The village, named "On-A-Slant", was reconstructed by the CCC in the 1930's, and again in the 1990's.

Molander Indian Village (State Historical Site)
(1780 - 1845), Price
A late fortified Mandan village. Site located on private property.

J. P. Tilton's Post
(1823 - 1826), Fort Clark
A Columbia Fur Company post erected by James Kipp one mile north of the future site of Fort Clark, and named for its first trader. Due to hostilities with the Arikara, the post was dismantled in 1824. The logs from the palisades were floated across the river and the post was rebuilt within the Mandan villages.

Fort Clark (State Historical Site)
(1831 - 1860), Fort Clark
An American Fur Co. post built by James Kipp. Ruins located two miles north of town. The Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1837-38 started here when the company steamboat St. Peters stopped here, carrying at least three infected passengers who boarded at Council Bluffs, IA or Omaha, NE. The disease spread like wildfire among all the Upper Plains Indians over the next few years, killing over 17,200. Replaced in 1845 by Fort James (Berthold), but was kept open due to popular demand by the newly relocated Arikara Indians. Burned down in 1860, the company took over nearby Primeau's Post.

Charles Primeau's Post
(1850 - 1861), Fort Clark
Ruins of a fur trading post still exist. Built by the Harvey, Primeau and Company of St. Louis, MO. Taken over by the American Fur Company in 1860 after Fort Clark burned down. Closed after an attack by Dakota Sioux in 1861.

Fort Mandan (1) (State Historical Site)
(1804 - 1805), near Washburn
Lewis and Clark built a winter camp here. Sakakawea (also spelled Sacagawea) joined them on their journey from this point. She was from one of the Knife River villages (see below). The triangular-shaped stockade was burned down sometime after Lewis and Clark left the area, as found on the return trip in 1806. The actual fort site is now under the Missouri River about 14 miles west of town, about three miles southeast of the state park. The replica stockade was built in 1972. Of interest nearby is Fort Mandan Overlook SHS.

Knife River Indian Villages (National Historic Site)
(1781 or 1782 - unknown), near Stanton
A group of three Hidatsa villages (Big Hidatsa, Sakakawea, Amahami) at the mouth of the Knife River, and two Mandan villages on the Missouri River below the mouth of the Knife River. The two Mandan villages (Big White, aka Deapolis or Mitutanka, and Black Cat, aka Ruhptare) were fortified by palisades and bastions surrounded by a wide dry ditch. The Mandans had relocated here from sites further south along the Missouri River, due to a smallpox epidemic among other Indian tribes.

René Jusseaume's House (Post)
(1794 - 1795, 1796 - 1797), near Stanton
A North West Co. stockaded trading post built on the west bank of the Missouri River just below the mouth of the Knife River, between the Mandan and Hidatsa villages. Also spelled Jusson or Gousseaume. The abandoned post was confiscated for Spain by explorer John Evans and renamed Fort Makay.

Fort Manuel (1)
(1804 ?), near Stanton
An early trading post built by Manuel Lisa below the mouth of the Knife River near the Mandan villages.

Fort Manuel Lisa (2)
(1809 - 1812, 1822 - 1823), near Pick City
A St. Louis Missouri Fur Co. trading post on Emanuel Creek, also called Fort Lisa, Fort Mandan (2), and Fort Lewis. It was built by Meriwether Lewis' brother Reuben. The site was reoccupied in 1822 by trader Joshua Pilcher and called Fort (William) Vanderburgh. The actual site is now underwater.

Fort Stevenson (State Park)
(1867 - 1883), Garrison
Located at the mouth of Douglas Creek, this fort replaced the military post at Fort Berthold (2) and was originally called New Fort Berthold (3). The troops transferred to Fort Buford after the fort was closed. The post was then turned over to the Fort Berthold Indian Agency for use as a school until 1894. The fort site is now under the waters of Lake Sakakawea (since the 1950's). A non-exact replica guardhouse was built in 2002 as the new park visitors center/museum, located about two miles northeast of the original fort site. Admission fee.

Fort Berthold (1)
(1845 - 1862), near Emmet, Fort Berthold Indian Reservation
An American Fur Co. post on the Misouri River. Originally named Fort James until renamed in 1846. Burned by the Sioux in 1862.

Fort Berthold (2)
(1858 - 1874), near Emmet, Fort Berthold Indian Reservation
Originally known as Fort Atkinson, an independent fur trade post built by Charles Larpenteur on the Missouri River (Lake Sakakawea), southwest of town. The site was purchased by the American Fur Company in 1862 and renamed to replace their Fort Berthold (1). Army troops built a log camp outside the stockade in 1864 - 1865. In 1867 the military garrison moved to Fort Stevenson. From 1868 to 1874 the post became the Indian Agency for the Arikara, Gros Ventre (Hidatsa), and Mandan tribes, and continued to function as a trading post. The site is now underwater.

Camp Seclusion
(1855), Fort Berthold Indian Reservation
A temporary Army encampment located somewhere near the mouth of the Little Missouri River.

Fort Kipp
(1825 - 1830), near New Town
A Columbia Fur Co. 96-feet square trading post, also known as James Kipp's Post, located about one mile southeast of the mouth of the White Earth River. Site now inundated by Lake Sakakawea (since the 1950's). The Columbia Fur Company and the American Fur Company merged in 1827, and in 1830 trader James Kipp was ordered to abandon this post and build Fort Clark downriver.

Confluence Camp
(1805, 1806), near Buford
The Lewis and Clark Expedition made camp at the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers in 1805, and again on the return trip in 1806.

Fort Henry (2)
(1822 - 1823), near Buford
A wintering post for Andrew Henry and William Ashley's trading expedition, located on the south bank of the Missouri River about one-quarter mile west of the mouth of the Yellowstone River.

Camp Barbour
(1825), near Buford
A temporary camp from General Henry Atkinson's expedition located on the south bank of the Missouri River. They occupied the abandoned and partially burnt cabins of Fort Henry (2).

Fort Union Trading Post (National Historic Site)
(1828 - 1867), Buford
Built by Kenneth McKenzie of the American Fur Company. It was enclosed by a 20-foot high stockade with two blockhouses. Originally named Fort Floyd, it was renamed in 1829. The steamboat Yellowstone arrived here in 1832, the first such boat to travel this far west, and the fort was in full operation by 1833. In the winter of 1864-65 the Army under General Alfred Sully moved in temporarily until Fort Buford was built, which used materials from this fort when it was later dismantled. At the same time, the American Fur Company had sold its interest in the fort to the Northwest Fur Company (aka Durfee and Peck Company). This was the longest lasting active trading post in the continental United States. Became a state park in 1941. Became a National Park in 1966 with site excavations conducted afterward. Since 1985 several buildings have been reconstructed, including the stockade and stone bastions.

Fort William (1)
(1833 - 1836), Buford
A Sublette and Campbell Co. trading post built 2.5 miles east of Fort Union at the mouth of the Yellowstone River. Sold to the American Fur Co. in 1834, but kept in operation. It was moved to within 150 yards of Fort Union in 1836 before finally closing. It then became a storage depot and livestock pen for Fort Union until demolished in the 1840's.

Fort Mortimer
(1842 - 1846), Buford
A Union Fur Company post, a competitor to the American Fur Company at Fort Union. Built about one-half mile east of the remains of Fort William (1). Four years later it was sold to the American Fur Co..

Fort William (2)
(1858 - 1866), Buford
An American Fur Co. adobe trading post built on the site of Fort Mortimer. Fort Buford was built using salvaged remains of this post.

Fort Buford (State Historical Site)
(1866 - 1895), Buford
Replaced the Army's garrison at Fort Union using some of the dismantled parts from that post and from Fort William (2). Rebuilt and enlarged in 1872. Chief Joseph surrendered here in 1877, and Sitting Bull surrendered here in 1881. Abandoned in 1895 for Fort Assiniboine in Montana. Became a state park in 1924. Two restored original buildings remain, the 1872 stone powder magazine and the 1871 Officers' quarters (aka Brotherton House), as well as the reconstructed barracks. Nearby is the new Missouri-Yellowstone Confluence Interpretive Center, which also serves as the fort visitor center and museum. Admission fee.

Cantonment at Sentinel Butte Station
(1880 - 1882), Sentinel Butte
A Federal camp at the Sentinel Buttes to protect the Northern Pacific Railroad.

Cantonment Bad Lands
(1879 - 1883), near Medora
A Federal camp on the west bank of the Little Missouri River to protect the Northern Pacific Railroad. Also known as Cantonment at Little Missouri Crossing.

Camp Houston
(1880), Dickinson
A temporary Army cavalry post to protect railroad construction crews.

Camp Sully
(Heart River Corral State Historic Site)
(1863 - 1864), near Richardton
One of General Alfred Sully's expedition encampments to put down the Sioux Uprising. Also known as Heart River Corral. Rifle pits still remain.

Fort Sauerkraut
(1890), Hebron
A civilian defense built on Cemetery Hill during the panic from the Ghost Dance Uprising on the Standing Rock Sioux Indian Reservation. It consisted of a 100-yard elliptical earthen embankment with a defensive ditch, and a 100-foot long building in the center, with railroad ties supporting a sod roof. It was never attacked. Reconstructed in 2004 at 100 Washington Ave.. See also Fort Sauerkraut Defense from the North Dakota State University Spectrum

Fort Dilts (State Historical Site)
(1864), near Rhame
A makeshift sod-wall fort where a settlers' wagon train bound for Montana was attacked for 14 days (September 1864) by the Sioux until Army reinforcements arrived from Fort Rice. Trace remains.

Eastern North Dakota - page 1

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