We are still on the Lewis and Clark trail. Though we have visited L&C sites from Harpers Ferry, Cahokia, Fort Dubois, and all the way to Fort Clatsup, OR, we have never been to Fort Mandan, ND. So we are on the way there now, but not before a couple of very interesting stops. Tom has always been interested in Fort Benton, an important fur trading station in Montana. We traveled up US 87, a nice easy ride with hardly any traffic. Tom says, “This is what I signed up for”.
The fort is along the Missouri Breaks, a series of badland areas characterized by rock outcroppings, steep bluffs and grassy plains along the Missouri River (I always thought they were in Missouri – another good geography lesson on the road).
We drove into the small town of Fort Benton. Although the streets are very narrow, there was hardly any traffic and we were able to park on the street across from the Fort. The people in this town were so friendly I think we could have parked here overnight if we wanted.
The oldest and original part of the Fort, which is said to be the oldest building in Montana continuously used is the Blockhouse. We were escorted in by our very knowledgeable guide.
We decided to check out the Agriculture Museum, but I at first decided I did not need to see one more museum. Tom went in, saw the quality of this museum that displays much more that Agriculture implements, and came out and insisted I join him. I was not sorry.
We then hit the road and drove from Fort Benton on Hwy 87 to Havre, MO. Tom couldn’t resist taking these pictures – now that’s a collector!
We stayed at the Fairgrounds in Havre before driving to Fort Mandan.
This was a private museum unlike Fort Clatsup in Astoria, OR. It was well maintained and the explanations of the interactions between Lewis and Clark and the Indians in the area were enlightening.
There was a large beautiful museum associated with Fort Mandan and the fees were good for both. It was about 2 miles back to the highway and we stayed until it closed. This museum is highly recommended if you are Lewis and Clark fans. We finally made it here after many years of having this on our ‘bucket list’.
This canoe was made from a single log. The picture above is of a Mandan house. There was an excellent display of the paintings of George Catlin who painted this part of the country in the early 1800’s.
On the Road Again, Caching Places That We’ve Never Been… Thanks for coming along on.