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The Archaeology of French and Indian War Frontier Forts$
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Lawrence E. Babits and Stephanie Gandulla

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780813049069

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813049069.001.0001

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Michilimackinac, a Civilian Fort

Michilimackinac, a Civilian Fort

(p.216) 12 Michilimackinac, a Civilian Fort
The Archaeology of French and Indian War Frontier Forts

Lynn L. M. Evans

University Press of Florida

Bazely summarizes excavation results at Fort Michilimackinac, a trading post and mission erected on the south shore of the Straits of Mackinac around 1715. This fort was one of a series of defensive works built to control a strategic location during the colonial period. Although military at times, it was more a fortified trading post in actual practice. Archaeological excavations have taken place at Michilimackinac every summer since 1959, and approximately two-thirds of the fort has been excavated. The post saw sequential occupations by French and British forces until the late eighteenth century. While not the ideal fort from a military standpoint, Michilimackinac was a success in its primary function—a rendezvous point for the fur trade. The presence of large numbers of traders and Native Americans, while unpredictable from a defensive point of view, made it ideal for conducting the negotiations crucial for maintaining peace in the west and raising allied militias for battles in the east.

Keywords:   French and Indian War, Michigan, archaeology, frontier fortifications, Fort Michilimackinac, Mackinac fur trade

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