Historic Fort Snelling

National Historic Landmark

Mailing Address:
200 Tower Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55111
Directions

Hours

Closed for the season except for special events.
 
Memorial Day Weekend-Labor Day:
Tue-Sat 10 am-5 pm
Sun Noon-5 pm
 
Open Memorial Day, July 4, and Labor Day, 10 am-5 pm
 
Sept-Oct:
Sat Only 10 am-5 pm

 

Admission

Get Tickets
  • $12 adults
  • $10 seniors and college students w/ID
  • $10 veterans and active military
  • $6 children ages 5-17
  • Free for children age 4 and under and MNHS members
  • Museums on Us: One free admission for Bank of America and Merrill Lynch card holders the first full weekend of every month. Bring your card and picture ID.
  • Free parking

 

Contact

612-726-1171

Connect with Historic Fort Snelling

Historic Fort Snelling on Twitter Historic Fort Snelling on Facebook Minnesota History Center on Flickr

2017 Nov 23

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Round Tower

Round Tower

Built around 1820, the state’s oldest building has served as a defensive post, museum, beauty parlor and apartments.

History

Certainly the best known of Fort Snelling’s buildings, this tower also may be the first. Built around 1820, it is now likely the oldest standing building in Minnesota. The Round Tower may have been designed as a site of last-ditch defense; many of its musket loop holes face inside the fort’s walls. Three stories tall, the tower mounted a 12-pounder field gun during the Winnebago War of 1827, but was never fired in anger. Later, the Round Tower served as a guard house, wash house, coal storage building, ordnance storehouse, prison room, office, private home with a commercial beauty shop and museum. Fort Snelling's flagpole was moved to the top of the tower in 1839, then moved again and a conical metal roof was added to the tower in 1861. A fire gutted the tower and consumed an adjacent commissary warehouse in 1869; stones reddened in the fire are clearly visible today. For most of this century, the Round Tower and nearby South Battery were the only recognizable remains of the frontier fort.

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