Fort Davis National Historic Site

Fort Davis National Historic Site

Fort Davis National Historic Site. Photo by Lynn Boswell.

Fort Davis National Historic Site is the second U.S. National Park Service site in Texas. It is one of the best preserved forts from the Western Frontier. It is a link back in time to an era when a network of frontier forts stretched from Canada to Mexico.

At Fort Davis, visitors not only uncover the history of the native peoples of this region but the story of Western Expansion. It’s the story of cultures clashing where Native Americans were fighting to survive. But it’s also a melting pot that was home to a remarkable diversity of people including the officer’s wives who were mostly from the East Coast, European immigrants and local Hispanic women who served the officers and their families, and the famous Buffalo Soldiers.

The park sits at the foot of the Davis Mountains about 100 miles from Big Bend National Park. The U.S. National Park Service has painstakingly studied and restored the post’s buildings including the officer’s quarters, barracks, and a hospital.

“We have spent a lot of time trying to nail down exactly what style hospital beds were used in the wards here, what style bedside tables were here,” said Park Ranger Donna Shaver. “The National Park Service really emphasizes authenticity, so we want to get this right.”

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Buffalo Soldiers

Lt. Henry Flipper

Lt. Henry Flipper
National Park Service

After the civil war, four regiments of African-American soldiers served at Fort Davis. They included Lieutenant Henry O. Flipper, the first African-American graduate of West Point.

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