Fort Union Trading Post National Historic Site was created in 1966 in order to preserve this historic “fort.” In 1968, archeologists began excavations to help learn more about this site. Excavations continued through the early 1970s. Archeologists again excavated between 1986 and 1988 learning more and recovering more artifacts about this unique trading post.
Fort Union Trading Post was created as a trading ground for various native tribes and the American Fur Company. It never served as a military fort. Seven tribes-the Assiniboine, Plains Cree, Blackfeet, Plains Chippewa, Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikirara-traded for goods from all over the world. The post sold more than $100,000 in goods each year.
Archeologists used the information discovered during the two excavation periods to reconstruct the fort. Today’s fort was built to appear as it did in 1851. For more information about the Archeological Collections of Fort Union Trading Post, check out this link. For more information about Fort Union Trading Post National Park, visit its website.