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Fort Assiniboine National Historic Site of Canada

Township Road 661, Fort Assiniboine, Alberta, T7N, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1935/05/29

The Fort Assiniboine museum lies immediately east of the Legion Hall and the cairn
for Fort Assiniboine NHS.; Woodlands County, Fort Assiniboine Museum, August 2009.
The Fort Assiniboine museum.
The fur trade route promoted by Governor Simpson as being the more efficient and
faster route to the Pacific.; Peter J. Murphy et al, 2007.
The fur trade route promoted by Governor Simpson
The cairn and HSMBC plaque for Fort Assiniboine NHS. The legion building is behind the cairn.; Parks Canada / Parcs Canada, 1989
The cairn for Fort Assiniboine NHS.

Other Name(s)

Fort Assiniboine National Historic Site of Canada
Fort Assiniboine
Fort Assiniboine

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2010/09/16

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Fort Assiniboine National Historic Site of Canada is located on the banks of the Athabasca River in the community of Fort Assiniboine, Alberta. The newly amalgamated Hudson’s Bay Company built the fort in 1823 as part of a safer southern trading route connecting the Saskatchewan and Athabasca River systems. There are no known above ground remains of the fort. Official recognition refers to a polygon of land surrounding vestiges relating to the fort.

Heritage Value

Fort Assiniboine was designated as a national historic site of Canada in 1935 because:
- built by the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1823, Fort Assiniboine became a key trans-shipment point in a new, faster, less dangerous and less expensive continental transportation system linking the Saskatchewan and Assiniboine rivers.

Fort Assiniboine was built following the merger of the Hudson’s Bay Company and the North West Company in 1823. The fort was fortified, in 1825, after a road was completed between Fort Edmonton and Fort Assiniboine, creating a safer and faster southern route connecting the Saskatchewan and Athabasca river systems. It remained an important post for a quarter century until the Hudson’s Bay Company again changed its shipping routes, excluding the fort. The scarcity of furs, the centralization of company administration, and the security of the Canadian-American frontier led to the abandonment of Fort Assiniboine in 1842. It was closed in 1877 and the abandoned shells of the buildings were burned down a short time later.

Sources: Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada, Minutes, 1968, September 2009.

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that contribute to the heritage character of the site include:
- its setting on the Athabasca River in the community of Fort Assiniboine, Alberta;
- the integrity of any surviving or as yet unidentified archaeological remains relating to the fort, which may be found within the site in their original placement and extent;
- the viewscapes from the site across the Athabasca River.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Historic Sites and Monuments Act

Recognition Type

National Historic Site of Canada

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1877/01/01 to 1877/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type



Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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