Living within the valley of the Missouri River, the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara nations were among the most powerful tribes of the northern plains. The Three Affiliated Tribes lived in large, consolidated villages consisting of earth lodges that housed between ten and thirty people each. Villages were constructed on terraces and bluffs overlooking the Missouri River, and were frequently fortified with ditches and palisades. The Three Tribes Museum is devoted to the history and culture of the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara, who where instrumental in the success of the Lewis and Clark expedition. The Corps of Discovery passed the winter of 1804-1805 among the Mandan. Had they not benefited from the knowledge, material culture and food stores of the Mandan, the Corps of Discovery would likely have perished during the bitter cold that characterizes winter on the northern plains. Opening in 1964, the Three Tribes Museum is located on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, where the Arikara, Mandan and Hidatsa currently reside. The museum features artwork, crafts, artifacts and other items relating to the three tribes.
Links: Three Tribes Museum