A trader at Fort Union explains the intricacies of bulletmaking.

When you visit historic sites — rendezvous posts where fur was traded — you can go back in time.
All summer long, you can experience voyageurs’ lives with re-enactors sharing their skills. Enjoy period music, folk dancing, demonstrations of musketry and blacksmithing, games for kids, paddling, beavers being skinned, cannons being fired, crafts of the time, cultural displays, traders’ row vendors with cool historic reproductions, classes … (By the photos, you can see I’ve totally enjoyed myself.)


Check their websites for unique presentations and events.


Cannon River near Stanton, Minnesota. (Rendezvous is May 24-29)

Fort Union Trading Post near Williston, North Dakota. (Rendezvous is June 13-16)

Voyageurs at Forts Folle Avoine were shorter in those days.

June 24 National Canoe Day–Lock n’Paddle.  Celebrate by paddling a canoe and playing voyageur.

Historic Indian Agency House  in Portage, Wisconsin. (Ho-Chunk Cultural Arts Day is June 29)

Museum of the Fur Trade in Chadron, Nebraska. (Fur Trade Days is July 11-14)

Forts Folle Avoine  in Danbury, Wisconsin. (Fur Trade Rendezvous is July 18-21)

Rosebud Park in Didsbury, Alberta. (Days of Yore, with Edmonton House Brigade re-enactors on August 3-4)

Try on a fur “backpack” at Snake River Fur Post.

Grand Portage National Monument in Grand Portage, Minnesota. (Rendezvous Days and Powwow is August 9-11)

Snake River Fur Post in Pine City, Minnesota. (Festival of the Voyageur was previously held in mid-September)

Lester Park in Duluth, Minnesota. (Lester River Rendezvous is September 28)

Fort William Historical Park  in Thunder Bay, Ontario. (North American Voyageur Council Fall Gathering is November 1-3)

Stylish beaver hats are what drove the fur trade.

Colonial Michilimackinac in Mackinaw City, Michigan (on the mainland, not the island. For clarification, see my blog post on Making Sense of Michilimackinac)

Fort St. Joseph National Historic Site on St. Joseph Island, Ontario


Final Thoughts


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