Fort de Buade Museum and Gift Shop
The newest exhibit on Mackinac Island is Captured Spirits Mackinac
With nearly 2,500 artifacts, Fort de Buade Museum specializes in Native American objects of the pre-contact period, through the eras of the French, British and Americans of the area. See history come to life through the Captured Spirits exhibit and the largest collection of authentic Indian and military artifacts and trade items of this period and region.
For over three centuries, the Straits of Mackinac has been the center for commercial and military activity. Fort de Buade was built in 1683 by Olivier Morel de La Durantaye for the purpose of demonstrating to the Native Americans the power of France and to check the westward expansion of the British into the rich fur regions of the Great Lakes.
The fort was named for Louis de Buade, Comte de Frontenac, the governor of New France from 1672 to 1682, and then again from 1689 until his death in 1698. For de Buade was the most important French outpost in northern Michigan west of Montreal.
Known as Fort Michilimackinac, it was the first of three forts to bear this name and make up the triangle of history in the straits region.