Western Colorado

Fort Arnett | Benny Station | Fort Boettcher | Fort Breckenridge | Cline's Ranch Post
Cochetopa Camp | Fort Crawford | Fort Davy Crockett | Fort Defiance | Camp Desolation
Fort Dominguez | Camp at Fairplay | Fort Flagler | Fortification
Fremont Lookout | Fremont's Camp | Fort Garland | Fort Guadalupe | Camp (Fort) Hooker
Camp Hope (1) | Camp at Hot Sulphur Springs | I.M. Ranch Mountain Fort | J. Jones' Fort (1)
Jones' Fort (2) | Cantonment La Plata | Camp Lay | Fort Lewis (1) | Fort Lewis (2)
Post at Los Conejos | Camp near Los Pinos Pass | Camp McIntire | Fort Mary B.
Fort Massachusetts | Camp Mead | Camp Meeker | Fort Meribeh | Fort Misery
Narraguinnep Fort | Camp in North Park | Fort Pagosa | Cantonment Pagosa Springs
Fort Peabody | Pike's Stockade (2) | Cantonment on Rio Mancos | Cantonment on the Rio Plata
Fort Robidoux | Camp Rose | Fort Roubideau | Fort Schofield | Fort Scott | Camp Soda Spring
Camp Starvation | Camp Stillwell | Camp Telluride | Toll Gate Camp
Cantonment Uncompahgre (2) | Cantonment on the Uncompahgre (1) | Fort Uncompahgre
Cantonment on the White River

Eastern Colorado - page 1 | Southeastern Colorado - page 3



Last Update: 12/SEPTEMBER/2020
Compiled by Pete Payette - ©2020 American Forts Network

Fort Garland
(San Luis Valley Museum Association)
(1858 - 1883), Fort Garland
A Federal post that replaced Fort Massachusetts. Its purpose was to protect settlers and roads from Ute and Apache raiders. Garrisoned by the Colorado Cavalry during the Civil War. The fort was abandoned and the troops transferred to Fort Lewis (2). The current fort is a partial reconstruction. The museum is operated by the Colorado Historical Society, and includes six of the original buildings. Two monuments (1930, 1949) are on site.

Fort Massachusetts
(1852 - 1858), near Fort Garland
A Federal log stockade built on Ute Creek for protection of the settlers against Utes and Apaches. Replaced by Fort Garland, located six miles south-southeast, due to unhealthful conditions. Site excavated in 1968.

Pike's Stockade (2)
(1807), near Sanford
A reconstructed 36-foot square log stockade where Lt. Zebulon Pike and his men were captured by the Spanish in February 1807. Pike did not realize they were actually in Spanish territory. This is the first documented American-flagged fort in the state. Located about five miles north of town, operated by the Colorado Historical Society in conjunction with Fort Garland. Actual site is located along the Conejos River about five miles from the Rio Grande. A monument (1936) marks the site.

Post at Los Conejos
(1863), near Conejos
A CO Cavalry (1st Regiment) post (Company E - July-August 1863; Company C - September-October 1863; Company I - September 1863; 2nd Regiment Independent Battery - October 1863) located on the Conejos River about 45 miles from Fort Garland.

Fort Guadalupe
(1863 - 1864), Conejos
A CO Cavalry (1st Regiment, Company I) fortified post (September-November 1863, April 1864) at the town church (Our Lady of Guadalupe) (built 1863) on the Conejos River about one-half mile east of town (corner of County Road G6 and County Road 13). The present church building was built later.

Frémont's Christmas Camp
(1848), near Summitville
A temporary encampment during John Frémont's 1848 expedition.

Fort Lewis (1)
(1878 - 1880), Pagosa Springs
Originally Cantonment Pagosa Springs, a four-company infantry post with log barracks, on the west bank of the San Juan River, with a six-square mile reservation. The post was relocated west to a more central location due to Indian troubles after 1879 (see below). Afterwards (until 1885 ?) the site was sometimes known as Fort Pagosa. The site is now a city park. One original structure possibly remains, now located on a private ranch north (four miles ?) of town.

Fort Lewis (2)
(1880 - 1891), Fort Lewis
Originally called Cantonment on the Rio Plata or Cantonment La Plata. Provided a garrison (five companies of infantry) to support the Southern Ute (Los Pinos) Indian Agency at Ignacio. Became the Fort Lewis Indian School in 1892, but most of the buildings eventually burned down. Transferred to the state in 1910 and became Fort Lewis College, which later moved to the east side of Durango in 1954-56, about 20 miles distant. The remaining historic buildings from both the military era (three) and the Indian school/college era, known today as "Old Fort", are now used as part of the Colorado Agricultural Experiment Station (San Juan Basin Research Center), which was originally established here in 1916 by Colorado State University (Colorado A&M College). The Research Center was closed in the summer of 2010, future status of the site is uncertain.
(some info provided by Nathan A. Barton of Colorado State Historical Society and Council on America's Military Past)

Camp Desolation
(1848), Saguache County
A temporary encampment during John Frémont's 1848 expedition. Located at the head of Wanamaker Draw on a tributary of Saguache Creek, in the La Garita Mountains.

Camp Hope (1)
(1848), Saguache County
A temporary encampment during John Frémont's 1848 expedition. Located on Embargo Creek.

Camp Rose
(1867 ?, 1873 ?, 1880 ?), Saguache County
A military camp established by Major Thomas E. Rose on the road to the Los Pinos Agency (Montrose), about one mile east of Cochetopa Pass in Benny Canyon, about three miles west of the old toll gate on Luders Creek, and about 30 miles west of Saguache. Also known as Benny Station, Cochetopa Camp, or Toll Gate Camp.

Camp near Los Pinos Pass
(1880), Saguache County
A temporary Army post protecting the Los Pinos Pass near San Luis Peak. Located southeast of Powderhorn, near Cathedral (?).

I.M. Ranch Mountain Fort
(unknown dates), southern Park County
An unnamed settlers' (?) fort with walls composed of logs and basalt boulders, according to local lore. Undetermined location, possibly in the Thirtynine Mile Volcanic Field, on U.S. Forest Service land.

Camp at Fairplay
(1860's), Fairplay
A CO Cavalry encampment.

Fort Breckenridge
(1859 - 1860), Breckenridge
Winter quarters for civilian prospectors, originally named Fort Meribeh or Fort Mary B., after the only woman travelling with the group. Site located about one mile north of town.

Camp McIntire
(1896), Leadville
A Colorado National Guard tent camp established just north of town during a violent strike by miners.

Camp Soda Spring
(1838), near Leadville
Located about four miles west of town.

Fort Flagler
(1879 - 1880), Animas
A civilian log stockade built after the "Meeker Massacre" (September 1879) at the White River Indian Agency to the north. Also used by the Army. Located on the Animas River about two and one-half miles north of Durango. No remains.

Camp Starvation
(1873), near Parrott City
A temporary camp occupied by a small group of men under Capt. John Moss who survived for 18 days on roots, bark, berries, and small game while caring for an injured companion.

Cantonment on Rio Mancos
(1879), near Mancos
An Army stockade built after the "Meeker Massacre" (September 1879) at the White River Indian Agency, Utah. Lasted about two months (late October-December), but never saw any action. Located on the Mancos River in the Ute Mountain Indian Reservation.

Narraguinnep Fort
(San Juan National Forest)
(1885), near Cahone
A settlers' log stockade defense against Indians, built after the "Beaver Massacre" (June 1885), that was used only for two weeks. Located at Narraguinnep Spring in Narraguinnep Canyon in the San Juan National Forest, on the border between Montezuma and Dolores Counties. The marked site with log remnants is maintained by the U.S. Forest Service.

Camp Telluride
(1903 - 1904), near Telluride
A CO National Guard (1st Squadron Cavalry, Troop A) camp to protect the mines from strikers.

Fort Peabody
(1904), near Camp Bird
A CO National Guard "fort" and shelter located at Imogene Pass between Ouray and Telluride, to keep the peace between miners at the Telluride Mines.

Cline's Ranch Post
(1882), near Montrose
A temporary Federal post originally called Cantonment Uncompahgre (2), located at a stage stop on the road to the Ute reservation, somewhere near Montrose. Possibly the same as (or close by) Fort Crawford below.

Fort Crawford
(1880 - 1890), near Montrose
A Federal post originally called Cantonment on the Uncompahgre (1) until 1886. It had about 50 wooden buildings by 1885. Located four miles north of the Southern Ute (Los Pinos) Indian Agency at the time, near the present town of Colona. Site located on private ranch land about eight miles south of town on the west side of US 550, at the former Uncompahgre Station rail stop.

Fort Uncompahgre
(Confluence Park)
(1828 - 1844), Delta
A civilian fur trading post on the Gunnison River, also called Fort (Antoine) Robidoux (or Roubideau), that was attacked by Ute Indians in September 1844. Indians later burned the abandoned fort in 1846. Local farmers demolished the last remnants in the 1880's. The fort was reconstructed in 1990 by the city at Confluence Park, just upriver from the presumed original site (about two miles west of town, on the south bank of the Gunnison River just below its junction with the Uncompahgre River). Admission fee. See also Malachite's Big Hole

Fort Dominguez ?
(unknown dates), Delta County
A fur trading post located at a ford on the Gunnison River near Dominguez Creek, about 20 miles northwest of Delta, near the Delta County border.

Fort Defiance
(1879), near Glenwood Springs
A log stockade built by civilian prospectors who were trespassing onto the Ute Reservation. The site is located about six (or eight ?) miles northwest of town, on the rim of Glenwood Canyon at the head of Wagon Gulch. It was also described as located ten (or 12 ?) miles southeast of the prospectors' main camp at Carbonate, which was about 20 miles west of the junction of the Colorado and Eagle Rivers.

Fort Arnett
(1879), Eagle County
A settlers' fort for protection against the Ute Indians, located on the Eagle River at the mouth of Turkey Creek (location ?).

John Jones' Fort (1)
(1863), near Kremmling
A settlers' "fort" or cabin located at old Jonesville at Gore Canyon on the Blue River.

Camp at Hot Sulphur Springs
(1863), Hot Sulphur Springs
A CO Cavalry (1st Regiment, Company D) camp (July-August 1863) on the Colorado River. This may or may not be the same site as Camp Stillwell (June-July 1863) occupied by the same company.

Fort Schofield
(1860's), Hot Sulphur Springs
A military post depicted on an 1868 map.

Jones' Fort (2)
(1868), Grand County
A settlers' fort located on the Jones Road at the west foot of Jones Pass (location ?).

Camp in North Park
(1863), Jackson County
A CO Cavalry (1st Regiment, Company M) camp (July 1863) located in "North Park". Possibly the same site as Camp Mead (below).

Camp Mead
(1863), Jackson County
A CO Cavalry (1st Regiment, Companies G and M) camp (July-August 1863) located at the north edge of "North Park" near the Wyoming state line.

Cantonment on the White River
(Rio Blanco County Historical Society and White River Museum)
(1879 - 1883), Meeker
A Federal post built soon after the "Meeker Massacre" (September 1879) at the nearby White River Indian Agency. The post's former parade ground is now the Rio Blanco courthouse grounds (1949 monument on grounds) at Main and Sixth Streets. The White River Museum (565 Park Street) is in the former Cavalry Officers' Quarters. Two other log structures also still exist (private). A monument (1927) to the "Meeker Massacre" is located on CO 64 about four miles west of town. The Agency was created in 1869 and was originally located about seven miles east of town along present-day County Road 8 (site marked by monument), but was moved downriver in 1878. See also Photos of Meeker by George Smith

Camp Meeker
(1887), Meeker
A U.S. Army (or Colorado state militia ?) post established after a Ute Indian uprising (August 1887). Unknown exact location.

Frémont Lookout Fortification
(1845 ?), near Rangely
A temporary post during one of John Frémont's expeditions.

(no date), near Craig
The ghost town is named for Fortification Creek, which flows along CO 13 (formerly CO 789) south into Craig and the Yampa River. Fortification Creek is so named presumably because of Fortification Rocks, a hogback formation which resembles a long castellated wall, just west of the highway and the creek (and just a couple of miles south of the townsite, which had been a consolidated school site back in the 1930's). However, it could also possibly have been named because of an actual fort of some type in Craig.
(info provided by Nathan Barton)

Camp Lay
(unknown dates), Lay
An Army encampment (or possible settlers' camp ?) on Lay Creek.

Fort Davy Crockett
(1837 - 1840), Browns Park
A trading post, sometimes referred to as Fort Misery for its shabby condition, built by Texas-based traders Philip Thompson, William Craig, and Prewitt Sinclair. It was simply a one-story log house with three wings, a dirt roof, and no stockade. It was reported in ruins by 1844. Exact location undetermined. The Browns Park region of Colorado/Utah was at the time known as "Brown's Hole", which is located along the Green River within Browns Park National Wildlife Refuge, between Dinosaur National Monument (the "Gates of Lodor") in Colorado, and the Flaming Gorge National Recreation Area in Utah. There are several possible sites theorized for the long vanished trading post, the one favored by Colorado authorities is a site along Harry Hoy Bottom or Nelson Bottom, near the "Watson Place". Other possible sites include those on the Utah side of the border, especially one near the historic John Jarvie Ranch and the Green River Indian Crossing.

NEED MORE INFO: Fort Scott on Tomichi Creek, Gunnison County; Fort Boettcher northwest of Walden, Jackson County.
Colorado Cavalry camps (undetermined/unknown locations): Camp (Fort) Hooker (March-April 1863) in "Middle Park" (Grand County ?).

Eastern Colorado - page 1 | Southeastern Colorado - page 3

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