Welcome to the website of the
Jeffers Petroglyphs Historic Site

Inyan Quote
This quote is from a Lakota creation story. Inyan means "rock", and Wakan Tanka means "the Great Mystery".

      For literally thousands of years, the Jeffers Petroglyphs Historic Site has been an important place for the people who lived here. Before the pyramids were built, before the first stone was erected at Stonehenge, there were carvings in the rock. Long after those first petroglyphs, this was a holy site to the native people who lived in and around this area -- the Iowa, Oto, Arapaho, Cheyenne, Lakota, Dakota, Nakota, and Ojibwe.

      The carvings weren't discovered by European settlers until the 1870s, but since then it has been visited many times by scientists, archeologists, anthropologists, and curious visitors. Several books and articles have been written about the petroglyphs, and in 1966 the Minnesota Historical Society bought the property from W.H. Jeffers to preserve the petroglyphs for future generations.

      Far from being a place with all its glory in the past, however, the Jeffers Petroglyphs Historic Site remains a living holy place. Native Americans still come to visit and pray at the site, and visitors are often touched by the peacefulness and power of the place. The staff works closely with Native American elders to make sure that the site is treated with respect and reverence, and we hope you can feel that during your visit.

Hours and Contact Information

Our location

History of the Area

Physical Characteristics of the Site

What We've Added

Events and Daily Programs
  • 2016 Schedule of Events
  • Our daily 2 p.m. programs
  • Guided Tours - Daily guided tours are offered at 10:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m., 3 p.m., and 4 p.m. Tours start at the rockface and are led by a guide who points out the carvings, interprets possible meanings of the petroglyphs and provides information about the people who made them. (Tours are not held during thunderstorms.)
  • Homeschool Days - None are currently scheduled.

Programs We Teach

Events we're part of

In The Future

Other Information

Upcoming Events
  • May 28 - Make American Indian Pottery Day
  • June 11 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • June 17-18 - Solstice at Minnesota's Ancient Observatory
  • June 25 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • July 2 - Make and Arrowhead Day
  • July 9 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • July 16 - Archaeology Day
  • July 23 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • July 30 - Make a Spearthrower Day
  • August 6 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • August 13 - First Harvest on the Prairie
  • August 27 - Animals of the Night
  • September 3 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • September 17 - A New Look at the Carvings
  • September 24 - Prairie Photography

  • Bloom1
    What's In Bloom

    There are over 230 flowering plants at the Jeffers Petroglyphs site. These are the ones currently blooming.

    As of March 3, 2016

    • No reports are in. We hope to have it updated soon.

    A Guided Tour of the Jeffers Petroglyphs Historic Site screensaver! (3.3 mb)
    A self-extracting screensaver to show you around and show you what we have to offer at
    the Petroglyphs. Simply save it to your desktop and click on it to install.

    Latitude/Longitude of the Site:
    44° 05' 30"N
  • 95° 03' 15"W

    Comments about the Website

    Comments about the Historic Site