Grand Portage National Monument, Grand Portage

4.8
#16 of 173 in Museums in Minnesota
Must see · Specialty Museum · Museum
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Grand Portage National Monument is a United States National Monument located on the north shore of Lake Superior in northeastern Minnesota that preserves a vital center of fur trade activity and Anishinaabeg Ojibwe heritage. The area became one of the British Empire's four main fur trading centers in North America, along with Fort Niagara, Fort Detroit, and Michilimackinac.

The Grand Portage is an 8.5-mile (13.7 km) (2720 rod) footpath which bypasses a set of waterfalls and rapids on the last 20 miles (32 km) of the Pigeon River before it flows into Lake Superior. This path is part of the historic trade route of the French-Canadian voyageurs and coureur des bois between their wintering grounds and their depots to the east.

Composed of the Pigeon River and other strategic interior streams, lakes, and portages, this route was of enormous importance in pre-industrial times. It provided quick water access from Canada's settled areas and Atlantic ports to the fur-rich Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory. Some 50 miles (80 km) upstream from Lake Superior, this trade route crosses the Height of Land Portage, on the Northern continental divide, and connects South Lake in the Pigeon River/Great Lakes watershed with North Lake of the Rainy River watershed. Grand Portage therefore was an essential link between the drainage basin of the Nelson River to Hudson Bay and that of the Saint Lawrence River to the Atlantic Ocean.
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Grand Portage National Monument reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
337 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • My wife and I enjoyed this site. We especially enjoyed the 20 minute movie at the heritage center. It covered the historical significant of this site. We met a volunteer on site, and he had some... 
    My wife and I enjoyed this site. We especially enjoyed the 20 minute movie at the heritage center. It covered the historical significant of this site. We met a volunteer on site, and he had some...  more »
  • We had a great visit even if fort and recreated buildings do not open until Memorial Day A great ranger on duty wasckrar a pleasure to visit and he recommended the 20 minute movie- time well spent... 
    We had a great visit even if fort and recreated buildings do not open until Memorial Day A great ranger on duty wasckrar a pleasure to visit and he recommended the 20 minute movie- time well spent...  more »
Google
  • Very informative and interesting. The 20 minute video is well done - both educational and entertaining. Carl was a wealth of information and was thorough in explaining details of any questions asked. We appreciate the time that he spent with us. He made the information interesting and a great learning experience. Thank you!
  • Absolutely spectacular place! Excellent visitor center and what an amazing town reconstruction full of details. I was thoroughly impressed, and wish I had allocated more time here. Two rangers are dressed in period garb in the town.

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