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Fort Pierre in Stanley County, South Dakota — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
 

American Indians and the Fur Trade

 
 
American Indians and the Fur Trade Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 18, 2016
1. American Indians and the Fur Trade Marker
Inscription. The fur trade worked thanks to American Indians. They harvested buffalo and other furbearers and bartered them to white traders. For a time, this system benefited both the traders and American Indians.

Traders relied on the American Indians to bring in large quantities of furs to places like Fort Pierre Chouteau and its many outposts. In central South Dakota, the Arikara and Sioux supplied most of the buffalo robes and furs to the traders. The local tribes knew the land, were familiar with seasonal movements of game, and were expert hunters and hide preservers. It was more profitable to provide rifles, traps, and knives to American Indians than to hunt and trap them on their own.

American Indians would trade furs for European items such as knives, guns, and beads. With resources depleted, the fur trade was all but over in the 1860s. Its legacies, both positive and negative, remain.

Sponsored by the South Dakota State Historical Society, a Preserve America grant, and the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad Corporation.
Images courtesy of the South Dakota State Historical Society.

 
Erected by The South Dakota State Historical Society, a Preserve America grant, and the Dakota, Minnesota and Eastern Railroad Corporation.
 
Location.
Marker detail: Fur-traders on the Missouri attacked by Indians image. Click for full size.
Sketch by W M. Cary, Harpers Weekly 1868
2. Marker detail: Fur-traders on the Missouri attacked by Indians
The greed of the fur trade destroyed the indigenous way of life on the northern plains and soured relations between American Indians and non-Indians.
44° 22.042′ N, 100° 22.305′ W. Marker is in Fort Pierre, South Dakota, in Stanley County. Marker can be reached from Island Drive 0.3 miles south of U.S. 83, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is located along the river walk, east of Island Drive, overlooking the Missouri River. Marker is at or near this postal address: 312 Island Drive, Fort Pierre SD 57532, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Old Deadwood Trail (approx. 0.2 miles away); John C. Waldron (approx. 0.2 miles away); Pierre's First School (approx. 0.4 miles away); Pierre (approx. half a mile away); Lewis and Clark (approx. half a mile away); Walter H. Burke (approx. mile away); Alexander McDonald Putello (approx. mile away); Pierre Was A Cowtown / Reading Brands (approx. 0.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Pierre.
 
More about this marker. Marker is a large composite plaque, mounted horizontally on waist-high posts.
 
Also see . . .
1. American Fur Trade. Native American Indians were the major source of beaver pelts and buffalo hides, for the Canadian, Great Lakes, and upper Missouri River fur trade from the late 17th to the early 19th century. During most of this period, Native Americans used nets, snares, deadfalls, clubs, etc. to obtain beaver pelts. At a New York fur auction,
American Indians and the Fur Trade Marker (<i>wide view; looking north across Missouri River</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, August 18, 2016
3. American Indians and the Fur Trade Marker (wide view; looking north across Missouri River)
John Jacob Astor sold upwards of half a million muskrat pelts in one day. Mountaineers, Indians, and the early settlers traded these furs and hides by the millions. (Submitted on October 7, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. The Fur Trade in South Dakota. In the Upper Missouri region, the basis for the fur trade was the bison, or buffalo robe. The American Indians procured and processed the robes and then brought them to trading posts in exchange for manufactured goods. The traders at the posts would then press the furs into packs and prepare them for shipment. After shipment to St. Louis, the robes were transported to eastern markets. Robe production by the American Fur Company reached 40,000 per year during the 1830s, increased to 90,000 a year in the 1840s, and an annual average of 100,000 bison robes by 1850. (Submitted on October 7, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Industry & CommerceNative Americans
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on October 9, 2018. This page originally submitted on October 5, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 13 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on October 7, 2018, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Andrew Ruppenstein was the editor who published this page.
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