Built in 1853 to keep peace as settler-colonists poured into the former Dakota lands, this fort withstood several attacks in the US-Dakota War of 1862 and became a training ground for Civil War recruits. The stone foundations of the other fort buildings remain, and interpretive markers tell the fort's story, while the restored commissary building houses interpretive exhibits.
Take a self-guided tour of the stone foundations of eight fort buildings that outline the way the fort looked during years of the Civil War and US-Dakota War. Walk in the footsteps of the soldiers who stayed here. Interpretive markers share the history and significance of each building. Explore the adjacent Fort Ridgely Cemetery for more history.
The historic site is located within Fort Ridgely State Park. In the summer, hike or ride the park’s trails on horseback, fish the stocked pond or trout stream, camp (drive-in and walk-in sites are available), or stay overnight in the renovated farmhouse. In the winter, ski, snowmobile, or stay overnight at the chalet.