Fort Rice State Historic Site
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Fort Rice was established on July 7, 1864, by Gen. Alfred Sully as a field base during his 1864 expedition. It was the first of a chain of forts intended to guard Northern Plains transportation routes, evidence of the United States government's changing policy toward these western lands, encouraging their settlement and providing protection for Euro-American settlers. Fort Rice became one of the most important military posts on the Upper Missouri River. It is located approximately 30 miles south of Mandan, Morton County.
None of the original buildings or structures remain at Fort Rice. Visitors will see depressions, foundation lines and WPA corner markers. A brief history of the fort and a map appear on a site marker.
About the Sibley and Sully expeditions of 1863 & 1864
In 1863, Gen. Henry H. Sibley led U.S. troops from Minnesota across Dakota Territory, pursuing bands of Dakota Indians, some of whom the military believed had participated in the US-Dakota War of 1862. Gen. Alfred Sully and the 2,000 soldiers in his command who traveled north along the Missouri River were also part of this military reprisal. Gen. Sully and his forces returned in 1864, still pursuing Dakota bands.
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