Fort Spokane

Looking for the Fort Spokane Visitor Center? Learn more about the history of Fort Spokane in person!

historic photo of soldiers in dress uniform lined up in front of barracks
Soldiers standing in front of barracks. Fort Spokane was built and operated by the U.S. Army in 1880.

NPS historic photo

Fort Spokane: The quartermaster's red barn.
Quartermaster's Stables, Fort Spokane.

NPS photo

A Cultural Crossroads

Fort Spokane and the surrounding landscape hold great historic significance. For thousands of years, the area was a gathering place for native tribes fishing the rapids of the Spokane River. In 1880, the U.S. Army established a fort above the confluence of the Spokane and Columbia Rivers. In 1898, the military fort was closed. The buildings were then used as an Indian boarding school and tuberculosis hospital. In many ways, the Indian experience at Fort Spokane is a microcosm of the Indian experience across the United States.

The Fort Today

Today, the National Park Service operates Fort Spokane as a visitor center and museum. During the summer, the guardhouse is open as the visitor center and museum. The grounds are open year-round with accessible walking trails. Step back in history with a tour of the museum exhibits and grounds.


The military of the "Indian Frontier" was different than any Civil War regiment in many ways. Uniforms, weapons and photographs of the military are on exhibit in the historic guardhouse. When the military left in 1899 the buildings were converted into an Indian Boarding School run by the government. Photographs and first hand accounts of life at the boarding school are exhibited throughout the guardhouse. All exhibits and programs are free of charge.

Last updated: October 25, 2023

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area
1008 Crest Drive

Coulee Dam, WA 99116


Please leave a detailed message if no one answers your call. Our rangers are often out talking to visitors.

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