What is a trading post?


Quick Answer

A trading post is a place, usually located in a rural area, that people visit to trade, buy or sell services or goods, states Merriam-Webster. Trading posts are also commonly called forts or stores.

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Full Answer

Trading posts played a large part in the settlement of America, according to the National Park Service. Many forts were established as part of the American Fur Company to trade furs, which were a valuable commodity in the mid to late 1800s.

Trading posts still exist, either as historic sites or operational stores and facilities. Fort Union Trading Post, The Gap Trading Post, Tuba City Trading Post, Toadlena Trading Post and Rough Rock Trading Post are examples of restored or preserved trading posts that still sell goods and operate as tourist attractions as of 2015.

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