Fort Stockton, Texas
YES, THERE IS A FORT
in Fort Stockton, Texas!
Historic Fort Stockton is located on the
east side of town and consists of original
and reconstructed military buildings. Today
the site includes Officers' Row, Guardhouse,
Enlisted Men's Barracks, and the Parade
Grounds. There is a visitor's Center at
the west side of parade grounds.
The Guard House, one of the first
buildings constructed, was completed
Military presence began here with the
establishment of Camp Stockton in 1858
by troops of the 1st and 8th Infantry,
US Army. It was named for Commodore Robert
Field Stockton, a naval officer who distinguished
himself during the Mexican War. This first
site was southwest of the present location,
near the present Courthouse.
The post protected travelers and settlers
on the numerous roads and trails that made
use of the abundant water supply of Comanche
Springs. It was here that these trails
crossed the Comanche War Trail.
The US Army withdrew from Texas during
the Civil War and abandoned Camp Stockton
in 1861. Confederate troops briefly occupied
the site until they too, withdrew. By the
end of the war little remained of this
first post. In July 1867, Colonel Edward
Hatch, Commander of the 9th Cavalry, re-established
Fort Stockton at its present location.
The new fort was garrisoned by four companies
of the 9th Cavalry, one of the new regiments
created for the black men who sought security
in the US Army after the Civil War. These
black enlisted men, called "buffalo
soldiers" by the Indians, were commanded
by white officers.
Fort Stockton was garrisoned by companies
of the 9th Cavalry, known as, "Buffalo
The post-war fort was occupied for nineteen
years (1867-1886). The fort's 960 acres
were leased from civilian landowners. An
additional 25 acres on Comanche Creek were
leased for the fort's garden.
By the early 1880's the "Indian menace" was
no longer a threat, and the future of the
fort was limited. It was finally abandoned
in 1886 as the frontier moved west.
The fort consisted of about 35 buildings.
Two of them were built of limestone and
the rest were built of adobe. Of the original
buildings, only four remain: the Guardhouse
and three of the eight Officers' Quarters.
The Guardhouse, one of the first buildings
completed, contains jailer's quarters,
three solitary confinement cells, and a
larger holding cell. A stone set into the
south exterior wall is inscribed, "Erected
1868 by Lieut. J.L. Humfreville, Q M" (Quartermaster).
Of the three remaining Officers' Quarters,
OQ #7 has been restored to its 1870's appearance.
During the restoration, one room was left
bare of interior plaster to reveal construction
techniques unique to adobe materials.
The City of Fort Stockton is committed
to the acquisition, restoration and reconstruction
of the Fort. Extensive archeological excavations
preceded and documented the reconstruction
of the Barracks and their accompanying
Historic Fort Stockton, listed on the
National Register of Historic Sites, is
owned by the City of Fort Stockton and
managed by the Fort Stockton Historical
Society. A support group, Friends of Fort
Stockton, assists in fund raising for the
continued development of the fort.
The Historic Fort Stockton Museum is located
in Barracks #1. A fifteen minute video
provides an introduction to the site and
interpretive exhibits provide additional
Fort Museum Hours
Monday - Saturday, 9:00 am
- 5:00 pm
Extended Summer Hours
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P.O. Box 1000
Fort Stockton, Texas 79735
here for E-mail
of Commerce Visitor Center
1000 Railroad Ave.
Fort Stockton, Texas 79735