Feel free to leave your comments
below. If you want to share your knowledge, additional information
or experience in a particular place your input is more than
Knife River Indian Villages
Knife River Indian Villages National Historic Site is an open
air ethnographic museum on a site of three former Native
American villages situated half a mile North of a town of Stanton in North
Dakota along County Road 37. Knife River Indian Villages
National Historic Site covers a total area of 1,758 acres (7.11 km²) along
the Missouri River.
Description of Knife River Indian Villages
National Historic Site
Plains Indians that lived here had three
major settlements that included Big Hidatsa, Awatixa Xi’e and
Awatixa villages. The most famous resident of the villages was a
Native woman Sacagawea who belonged to Lemhi Shoshone tribe. She
joined Lewis and Clark Expedition (1804- 1806) that explored
newly acquired lands as a result of a Louisiana Purchase of 1803
from French emperor Napoleon Bonaparte. Her expertise and
knowledge of survival in the wilderness as well as her ability
to interact with other natives helped American explorers to
reach the Pacific Ocean.
Knife River Villages will dispel the myth that Plains Natives
were entirely nomadic tribes and lived in teepees. Some of their
houses were quiet complex and ingenious in their design. Native
dwellings were circular in shape and some reached a diameter of
40 feet or 12 metres. Wooden dome would support soil that
covered the house. It provided good isolation for its residents
and kept the temperature cool in summers and warmer in cold
winters. Several families could live under one roof along with
their pets. Some of their houses have collapsed, but their
general outline is still visible in the ground. Some of the
houses are reconstructed to give an impression of what it was
like to live here.
These villages were thriving due to trade with the Europeans.
However smallpox outbreak of 1837- 1840 greatly unaffected local
peoples. Death rate reached 90% among various tribes that had
any contact with outsiders. Eventually villages were abandoned.
Survivors left their settlements and moved to Like-a-Fish-Hook