Pipestone National Park

Travel Brochure

History of Monument

Pipestone was first just a bunch of Native American tribes. In 1937 the government received control from the Sioux Indians who had earlier owned the land but now givin it away. They made it a monument to preserve the historic catlinite. With legislation being established quarrying rights were reserved back to native americans. People with ancestors of indians are allowed to quarry but none others can. Change in boundaries occurred in 1956. PIpestone is an amazing place to have fun and learn at the same time.
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Sacred Pipes

Activities and Events

Activities and events: There are many fun activities to do at Pipestone. To start off for kids you can there is an activity called the junior ranger program. You learn about Pipestone's history and resources while having fun. For family fun you can go to the many different quarries. We have more than 100 different quarries. A quarry is a place where the the Native Americans used to leave offerings like tobacco and spirits. The Three Maidens is our most popular quarry you can have a picnic near the 35 huge slabs of rock surrounding three slabs of granite. You can also go fishing at split rock creek. The largest body of water in Pipestone Monument. There is also many different types of animals like Painted Turtle, Gray Tree Frog, Beavers, Big Brown Bats, Garter Snakes, Eastern King Bird, Green Sunfish, and Brook Stickleback.
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Brook Stickleback


Depending on what you want the weather to be depicts when you will stay with us. The warm season lasts from May 23 to September 22 with average high above 70*F. Our hottest day is July 22 with a high 82*F and low of 62*F. The cold season is November 27 to March 7 with high below -35*F. The coldest day is January 20 with high of 23*F and low of -7*F. The month with the most precipitation is May, least is October. Highest likelihood of snow is in January. We recommend coming between April and July.
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Pipestone during beautiful weather

Association With Native Americans

Pipestone has a great association with Native Americans. Making pipes out of catlinite was a sacred religious practice to religious plains indians. Catlinite is a type of rock found mainly in Pipestone. The Sioux tribes took control in the 1700s. Because of arguments and white men trying to take over they wrote a treaty. The Pipestone National Monument was made up of Native American tribes. Some tribes were enemies and some were friendly. They would trade goods and pipes with each other. The tribes would have their own land and they have many rituals and ceremonies and still today you can see smoking marks that show what rituals they did. People day have found pipes with special carvings to symbolize the celebration. The white pipe is the is the most important pipe of all, it symbolizes peace a tribe would give it another tribe for a gift after they had been at war.

Fascinating Facts

  • Monument occupies 282 acres of land.

  • Sacred stone was never used for anything bu pipes.

  • Legend says that catlinite and the people of pipestone were all the same material which is what made it so sacred.

  • Inverted T-shaped calumet is best known shape for pipes.
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Inverted t shape pipe.

How the Park has Changed

Pipestone is almost 100 years old and it has changed a lot. The reason why it’s called Pipestone is because you can see smoke marks from pipes that Native Americans made and used.The park has come from Native American tribes to Civil War soldiers to a National Monument. Ronald Reagan made a law that said that we have to preserve large historic landscapes.Now the Call to Action is helping to expand to Historic Centers and rural landscapes
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