Fort Osage Records (KC0147)
Native Sons Archives (NSA)
Fort Osage, located in the northeast corner of Jackson County, near the town of Sibley, Missouri, was the first occupation of the county by the United States and the most westerly and successful of the 28 such posts operated under the United States factory system. The Fort and its adjacent factory (e.g. trading post) were constructed between September and November, 1808 by the St. Charles Dragoons and the First U.S. Infantry under the direction of William Clark, newly appointed Commander of Militia and Indian Agent for the Louisiana Territories, and under the command of Captain Eli B. Clemson.
The structures represented an established federal policy to regulate the rapidly growing fur trade, discourage British traders from the North and Spanish merchants from the South, and to provide protection for the new western settlements from the Osage and other tribes of the area. While supervising the construction of the Fort, Clark signed a treaty with the Great and Little Osage ceding to the Osage all territories west of a line beginning approximately 27 miles east of the mouth of the Kaw River and running south from the Missouri River to the Arkansas state line. In return, the Great and Little Osage removed their villages to the vicinity of the Fort and relinquished their claim to all lands east of this line.
During its brief history, the Fort hosted many important events and individuals. The trading house continued in operation until 1822, when the United States factory system was abandoned under pressure from the fur companies.
The records are microform copies of correspondence, reports and other documents found in the National Archives in Washington, D.C. pertaining to the establishment and operation of Fort Osage. Two of the rolls are part of the National Archives Microfilm Publication Series for letters received between June 1908 and December 1809, by the Secretary of War from correspondents whose surnames or offices began with the letter "C". The remaining two rolls were specially microfilmed from the records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (Record Group 75); the records of the Office of the Quartermaster General (Record Group 92); and the records of the Adjutant General's Office (Record Group 94). 1808-1815.
4 microfilm reels (MICROFORM).
© State Historical Society of Missouri
updated: Monday, February 07, 2011
State Historical Society of Missouri Research Center-Kansas City
(816) 235-1543 WHMCKC@umkc.edu