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Finding Fort d'Orléans

The History

Somewhere in the southeastern corner of present-day Carroll County, MO the kingdom of France established a trading post called Fort d'Orléans after the then-incumbent Duke of Orléans, Philippe II. It was under the administration of France's colonial government in Louisiana and in addition to being a trading post the fort also served as a missionary base for the Jesuit order and as a military outpost to guard against Spanish encroachment. These functions have been more or less confirmed throughout the 20th century. A 1914 article written by Ed G. Hill and published in the Missouri Historical Society Collections testified to the discovery of numerous artifacts of a European provenance (e.g., gun parts, iron ax heads, and hoes). Some of the artifacts from this supposed discovery were donated by Hill to the Missouri History Museum in 1915 (pictured below). In the second half of the 20th century archaeological excavations carried out by the University of Missouri - Colu…

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