Pipestone National Monument is located in southwestern Minnesota, just north of the city of Pipestone, Minnesota. It is located along the highways of U.S. Route 75, Minnesota State Highway 23 and Minnesota State Highway 30.Work out when and for how long to visit Pipestone National Monument and other Pipestone attractions using our handy Pipestone trip planner.
The catlinite, or "pipestone", has been traditionally used to make ceremonial pipes, vitally important to traditional Plains Indian religious practices. The quarries are sacred to most of the tribe of North America, Dakota, Lakota, and other tribes of Native Americans, and were neutral territory where all Nations could quarry stone for ceremonial pipes. The Sioux tribes may have taken control of the quarries around 1700, but the Minnesota pipestone has been found inside North American burial mounds dating from long before that, and ancient Indian trails leading to the area suggest pipestone may have been quarried there for many centuries.
As the United States grew westward in the 19th century, pipes found their way into white society through trade. To protect their source, the Yankton Sioux secured free and unrestricted access via The Treaty With The Yankton Sioux, which was signed on April 19, 1858.
Pipestone National Monument reviews
This was a great start to the day. It is about a 3/4 mile walk on a paved path. The falls are worth the walk. Interior was closed due to COVID. more »
Now this is a national hidden gem. Not a huge park so easily navigable in an hour. The Native American history - very interesting and visual. Loved the waterfall area. Just a great place to see some..... more »
My grandma took me here 20 years ago and I thought it was super cool. The trails are fun and it's honestly neat to see what prairie vegetation is like without the farming. Being able to speak with native stone carvers is something you just have to do. Take plenty of pictures and don't leave without a souvenir, they are too inexpensive and you'll regret it if you don't. Plan on camping in the area soon.
A very nice National monument with a great history of the native Americans. The rangers were very knowledgeable and friendly. We couldn't spend a lot of time in the museum because we had our dog with us but it was nice from what we could tell. The circle trail was very nice with lots to see and learn about. The junior ranger program was great too. Definitely worth a stop!
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