"When you pray with this pipe, you pray for and with everything."  -Black Elk

For countless generations, American Indians have quarried the red pipestone found at this site. These grounds are sacred to many people because the pipestone quarried here is carved into pipes used for prayer. Many believe that the pipe's smoke carries one's prayer to the Great Spirit. The traditions of quarrying and pipemaking continue here today.


Cultural demonstrator shaping pipestone item

Cultural Demonstrations

Local American Indians carve pipestone throughout the summer months in the Upper Midwest Indian Cultural Center, located inside the visitor center.

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A quarrier working in his quarry pit


Quarrying is the first step of the pipestone tradition. It requires a commitment to physically challenging work.

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Winnewissa Falls

Winnewissa Falls

The Circle Trail is 3/4 of a mile and displays the many features of the monument, including Winnewissa Falls as well as the quarry pits.

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Big Blue Stem in the tallgrass prairie

Tallgrass Prairie

The tallgrass prairies host many plants and animals that once flourished throughout the midwest.

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