The path leads to the grassy outlines of the settlement’s original three large lodges and five workshops. Parks Canada has recreated a sod lodge and two more workshops near the original mounds. There, guides and animators dressed as Vikings explain the Norse architecture and lifestyle and demonstrate ancient crafts. The recreated lodge is entered through a Hobbit-high doorway built into 6ft-thick walls. Thanks to the sturdiness of the construction, the winds may howl outside, but inside is silent. If L'Anse Aux Meadows is indeed where Erikson's party settled, it would have been in one of these huts that Erikson’s nephew, Snorri, became the first European baby born in the New World.
American forces thought the French villagers were supporting Indian skirmishes with the westward-bound pioneers. In October 1812, they massacred the inhabitants of Chief Black Partridge's village. A few weeks later, the Americans burned French Peoria to the ground, took the inhabitants captive, and transported them down river to Alton. These acts were later condemned and the French villagers were compensated for their losses by an act of the United States Congress. The Native Americans, who for centuries had enjoyed the bounty of the Pimiteoui valley, were forced to abandon it and migrate west.