Lock and Dam No. 1

Places to Go

US Army Corps of Engineers
5000 West River Parkway, Minneapolis, MN 55417

The Mississippi River flows through the locks of Lock and Dam 1.
A group of canoeists pilot their canoes through Lock and Dam No. 1. Many of these groups are co-led by Wilderness Inquiry staff and National Park Rangers.

The construction of Lock and Dam No. 1 was completed in 1917. The 30-foot high dam provided 9 1/2-foot channel from St. Paul to Minneapolis. Reconstruction of the dam took place in 1929 and then again from 1978 to 1983.

Lock and Dam No. 1 is one of the steps in the "stairway of water" on the Mississippi River that makes possible the travel of barges from St. Anthony to the Gulf of Mexico. Commercial barges carried over 15 million tons of commodities through the Lock. Among the commodities are: coal, burner oils, grain, and aggregate products.

Lock and Dam No. 1 provides for both commercial and recreational uses. Along with the commercial barges are recreational crafts ranging from canoes and rafts to houseboats and sleek powerboats.

Activities: There is a 30-minute tour called the Visitor Promenade offering a bird's-eye view of the locking procedure and other topics ranging from barge traffic in the transportation network to the Corps 9-foot channel project.

Hours: Please call for more information.

Contact Information: Call the Lock and Dam No. 1 office at 612-724-2971.

Last updated: April 6, 2016

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

111 E. Kellogg Blvd., Suite 105
Saint Paul, MN 55101


(651) 293-0200
This is the general phone line at the Visitor Center. Please leave a voicemail if we miss your call and expect a return call within 1 day, often sooner.

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