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Fort Totten State Historic Site

Fort Totten State Historic Site stands today much as it stood when first erected in 1867.

It was built to protect overland transportation and supply routes. Many of the Lake Region pioneers settled here by way of the Fort Totten military post. In 1890, the military post was decommissioned and from 1891-1935 it served as a Bureau of Indian Affairs Boarding School. Faded murals from this era reflect everyday life of the school children and can still be seen adorning the walls of several buildings. The Fort also served briefly as the preventorium for residents with tuberculosis.

In 1940 it was returned to an educational facility and serves as a grade school and high school for the Fort Totten Community until 1959. In 1960, the Fort became a state historical site and continues in that role today. Many visitors come each year to walk the grounds and enter the original buildings experiencing the past. You will find the Interpretive Center, The Plummer's Store, The Little Theatre, Traveling Exhibits, Pioneer Daughter's Museum, the Totten Trail Historic Inn, and much more.

Lake Region Pioneer Daughter's Museum

Housed in the hospital building at Fort Totten State Historic Site is the Lake Region Pioneer Daughter's Museum. Displays include uniforms and artifacts of Colonel Creel (founder of Devils Lake and instrumental in the formation of Camp Grafton) and other former officers stationed at the military post from 1867 - 1890.

The most compelling artifact from this time may be letters written by Private Michael Vetter in his native German language. Collections from Lake Region pioneer homes, professional practices, and agriculture tools interpret the settling of the area. The museum is staffed daily from mid-May to mid-September from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Admission is included in the Fort Totten State Historic Site fee. Telephone: (701) 766-4346

Contact Information: 

Fort Totten State Historic Site Foundation
PO Box 554Devils Lake, North Dakota 58301

Location: SE edge of the town of Fort Totten, 13 miles SE of Devils Lake