Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center
The North Dakota Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center stands at a crossroads of culture and commerce. When the Lewis & Clark Expedition arrived in 1804, they simply became the most famous of countless travelers over hundreds of years traversing the Plains or the Missouri River in search of knowledge and trade. Each gallery tells the story of a different one of these groups.
State-of-the art exhibits and hundreds of period artifacts make the story of the Lewis & Clark Expedition vivid like never before. The expedition, brainchild of President Thomas Jefferson, was far more than adventure—it was a quest for knowledge. The exhibit shows how Lewis and Clark sought to connect the then-unknown interior of North America with the Enlightenment.
As the Enlightenment unfolded in Europe and the Eastern states, other explorers followed in Lewis & Clark’s footsteps. Among the most prominent are German Prince Maximilian zu Wied and Swiss painter Karl Bodmer. The 81 aquatint prints they published are among the most valuable visual documents of the American West, and from the Center’s complete collection, nine of these are on display on a rotating basis.
Our First Farmers, particularly the women of the Mandan and Hidatsa nations, built powerful farming economies that made this area a vital commercial crossroads. This farming history stretches back nearly a thousand years and has connections with the homestead era and the present.
Temporary Art and History Galleries
Two galleries feature temporary art and history exhibits, with a special emphasis on the cultural and artistic heritage of the Upper Great Plains. Check back often to see what’s new!
Our nationally-certified interpretive staff believes the best museum experiences engage every sense. Depending on your interests, they may offer you the chance to sample the parched corn Lewis & Clark ate, try on an Expedition uniform, play a traditional Mandan game, and more!
Specializing in locally-made and craft-made items, the Museum Store features books, artwork, one-of-a-kind jewelry, clothing, home décor, and much more.
Stroup Event Center
Let the rich Great Plains atmosphere of our Interpretive Center lend the perfect feel to your event or meeting. With large windows and an attached deck overlooking the Missouri River, the Stroup Event Center is an unforgettable event location. A catering kitchen is attached.
Harmony Park and Grounds
The Interpretive Center is surrounded by acres of parkland and grassland. Stroll the paths of Harmony Park, or discover historic heirloom crops in the Our First Farmers Gardens.
Fort Mandan and Fort Mandan Visitor Center
Fort Mandan is a fully-furnished, full-size replica of the fort in which the Lewis and Clark Expedition overwintered in 1804-1805. Their winter was characterized by the hospitality of the Mandan and Hidatsa peoples. In fact, this is where they met and built friendships with such important figures as Sakakawea, Toussaint Charbonneau, and Sheheke-Shote. Guided tours depart at regular intervals throughout the day and will bring the stories of that winter to life.
Fort Mandan Visitors Center
Exhibits in the Fort Mandan Visitor Center reveal that winter in greater depth, while a childrens’s play area allows young visitors to discover history with costumes, camp supplies, and more. A museum store offers a similar selection to that at the main Interpretive Center.
Walking trails wind through the cottonwood forests of the Missouri River, while interpretive panels relate the nature you see with the history of the area. Picnic shelters and a playground also available.