HISTORICAL EXPERIENCES | Earliest Explorers in Minnesota

Minnesota and U.S. History Teachers. Start off your year with a bang! Have a French Voyageur come to your school to tell you all about Minnesota’s first business – The Fur Trade. Costumed interpreter will bring this era to life through highly interesting and interactive hands-on experiences.

Mr. Arn Kind, a teacher of 45 years, who will come in the costume of a French Voyageur, and teach our students about Minnesota’s first business; the Fur Trade. The French Voyageurs were among the first Europeans to explore and make maps of what would become Minnesota.

Mr. Kind uses hands-on living history experiences where students will role-play the parts of voyageurs or proud Dakota or Ojibwa Indians. Students will learn how these early Europeans paddled heavy cargo-laden canoes through the vast interior of North America. They will also learn how the French and the Indians bartered with one another. The French wanting furs to be made into fashionable hats and clothing; the Dakota and Ojibwa wanting the French trade goods. These trade goods would make life easier for the Indians, and were a mixture of cloth (cotton or wool), beads, trinkets, mirrors, traps, knives, tomahawks, and trade rifles.

One of the reasons Mr. Kind’s presentation really makes the Fur Trade come alive for his audiences is because of his realistic and colorful portrayal of a voyageur. Another reason is because of all the artifacts and trade goods he brings and displays for his audience to see. In order to display and use these artifacts in his presentation, he makes sure that everything he brings in has been made safe. Traps, knives, firelocks, and other trade items are all dulled and modified so that they cannot cause injury. Mr. Kind, of course, does not bring any gunpowder or any other combustibles into the schools or libraries where he presents. Schedule your living history event today.