Teacher Reference Materials

Fort Union Fur Trade Overview

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Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Social Studies


This document provides background information for teachers on Fort Union trading. For 39 years, Fort Union was the longest-lasting and most profitable fur trading post on the Upper Missouri River. Here seven Northern Plains Indian Tribes, including the Assiniboine, traded buffalo robes and other furs for goods such as cloth, guns, blankets, and beads. A bastion of peaceful coexistence, this fort annually traded over 25,000 buffalo robes and $100,000 of merchandise. 


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Last updated: August 18, 2015