North Dakota State

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Historic Sites
Tourist Attractions

Historic Sites

Chateau de Mores State Historic Site
The chateau was the summer home of the French nobleman and entrepreneur, the Marquis de Mores, who came west in 1883. His enterprises included establishing the town of Medora and a meat-packing plant (now Chimney Park). Featured are interpretive center exhibits, video and museum store, original chateau and out-buildings, and self-guided visits of the chateau. The popular exhibit, The CCC in North Dakota, is featured in the nearby contact station. For information call: (701)623-4355

Fort Abercrombie State Historic Site
This military post served the early Dakota settlements and guarded Red River traffic from 1857 to 1877. It was besieged by the Sioux during the Dakota Conflict of 1862. Featured is a local history museum, video and museum store, reconstructed blockhouses and palisade walls. For information call: (701)553-8513

Fort Buford State Historic Site
Fort Buford was established in 1866 to guard the trails west and serve as a major supply depot. The fort incarcerated several famous American Indian leaders, including Sitting Bull and Chief Joseph. Featured are museum exhibits and museum store; Touch of Home and Beacons on the Prairie: Railroad Signal Lamps special exhibits; original officers' quarters, officer of the day and stone powder magazine buildings; ghosted guard house and marked cemetery. For information call: (701)572-9034

Gingras Trading Post State Historic Site
Established by Metis trader Antoine B. Gingras in the 1840s, the oak-log post and home are some of the oldest standing structures built by Euro-Americans and among the few tangible remains of the fur trade era in the Red River Valley. Located near Walhalla. For information call: (701)549-2775

Whitestone Hill Battlefield State Historic Site
A haven for buffalo and other big game, this area attracted Sioux peoples for annual hunts. Army troops under General Alfred Sully battled with Sioux warriors here in early September 1863. Twenty-two soldiers and more than 100 Indians were killed. Located near Kulm, the site features a small museum, two monuments, adjacent park and picnic and recreational facilities. For information call: (701)328-2666

Tourist Attractions

Dakota Zoo
The Dakota Zoo is North Dakota's largest zoo, with 500 reptiles, birds and mammals representing 125 species. There are prairie dogs, mountain lions, bison and other animals native to the region. But that's not all you'll see at this zoo. There are exotic animals from throughout the world, such as aoudads and yaks. And you can see it all from a train, should you choose to purchase a ticket to the zoo's train tour. There's also a concession stand, complete with popcorn, cotton candy, hot dogs and soft drinks. And the Zoovenir Gift Shop carries an unusual selection of gifts and souvenirs, and Dakota Zoo members receive a 10% discount on all purchases. The Dakota Zoo is located at Sertoma Park, Riverside Park Road. The zoo is open April 25 through Sept. 30 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. It's open during the weekends in October from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., weather permitting. For information call: (701)223-7543

The International Peace Garden
It straddles the longest unfortified border in the world on the world's longest north/south road, and is centrally placed halfway between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. A botanical memorial to peace, this stunning garden is located on a carefully chosen, one-of-a-kind point on the globe. Amid the birch and aspen forests of the Turtle Mountains, the 2300-acre International Peace Garden blooms on either side of the U.S./Canadian border, commemorating more than 150 years of peace between the two nations. The cairn on the exact line of the border is inscribed, "We two nations dedicate this garden, and pledge that as long as man shall live we will not take up arms against one another." Formal gardens bursting with the variegated colors of 140,000 annuals line the international boundary. The intricate floral designs, reflecting pools and native rock pathways invite the visitor to explore and contemplate. The Garden is the home of the International Music Camp, where hundreds of high school students gather each year for intensive training in music and the arts. On summer weekends, concerts by the students and visiting professionals fill the Garden with the sound of music. Scenic drives on both sides of the international line loop around lakes, playgrounds, and picnic areas. Deer and waterfowl are plentiful here, and you may even glimpse an occasional elk or moose along the way. Visitors are invited to stay at the Peace Garden's fine, wooded campground, or explore the scenic pleasures of the Turtle Mountains. Nearby Lake Metigoshe has an excellent shoreline hotel and a lovely state park. Lodging is also available in Dunseith, Bottineau, Rolla, and Rugby. For information call: (701)263-4390

Rugby: The Middle of Middle America
Rugby, North Dakota, is the Geographical Center of North America, with the exact spot marked by a cairn at the junction of U.S. Highway 2 and North Dakota Highway 3. Here's solid evidence that you're indeed in America's Heartland. The Geographical Center Museum features a life-size cut-out of the "world's tallest man," a local salesman who enjoyed a degree of celebrity in his time. The Pierce County Courthouse and the Great Northern Railway Depot are in the National Register. The Victorian Dress Museum is also open to the public. For information call: (701)776-5846

Lawrence Welk Homestead
Lawrence Welk, who would grow up to be one of America's favorite bandleaders, was born on March 11, 1903, in the wood-sided sod house that still stands on the family farmsite near Strasburg, North Dakota. The son of Russian immigrants, Lawrence left home on his birthday in 1924 to pursue his musical career. Thirty-one years later, on July 2, 1955, he made his debut on national television, with a program that would be produced for the next twenty-six years. Today, reruns of the still-popular Lawrence Welk Show are broadcast weekly throughout the United States and in foreign countries. Restoration of the six-acre site began in 1990, and is being paid for by private donations; no federal grant funds have been used. Many of the original furnishings have been placed in the sod house along with other antiques from the 1920s. Restored outbuildings, including the summer kitchen, carriage house and blacksmith shop, are much as they were when Lawrence Welk was growing up on the farm. For information call: (701)336-7519

Dickinson Dinosaur Museum
It includes a full-scale Triceratops, ten other full-scale dinosaurs, and a complete fossil rhino. Located on I-94 in Dickinson and attached to the Joachim Regional Museum complex, the Dinosaur Museum is a popular attraction. For information call: (701)777-2811