Exploring Fort Clark
Apr 2, 2009
|From a book called “Fort Clark, The Lonely Sentinel”, written by Caleb Pirtle III and Michael F. Cusak, the title of Chapter 2 reads:
“The Guardian of the Prairies. By 1852, the U.S. Army had decided to establish a chain of forts across the western fringe of Texas to bring a measure of protection to a harassed country.
One post, nailed to a rocky ridge of limestone that curved along Las Moras Creek, would be known as Fort Clark“.
I have read this book, loaned to me by Jerry Bertelsen, and I highly suggest it for good reading and some very interesting history of this intriguing place.
Our friends, Kit & Jerry, have their own property here, with a guest RV site.
Marilyn & I have had the pleasure of being a guest of these wonderful people for a few days.
Kit & Jerry have given us a guided tour of the Fort property and today turned us loose with a map and their golf cart, to explore at will, the buildings, the history and the dusty, rocky trails along Las Moras Creek.
With map in hand we rode along a trail next to the creek, taking pictures of the peaceful scene, and a place or two where John Wayne filmed a scene for his epic movie, “The Alamo”.
We then moved to the well known statue called the “Empty Saddle”, to begin our tour.
We took pictures along the way and will share them with you.
The problem with trying to share with you, the history of this fort, is that it would take many journal entries to complete it in any detail at all.
From chapter 4 of the book mentioned above, it reads:
“When the war between the states spilled into Texas, the Union troops marched away from Fort Clark, leaving it in Confederate hands.
The rebels had little time to worry about the duel between North and South, however. The Cavalry at Clark was too busy trying to prevent Indians and Mexican bandits from conducting a “civil and fratricidal” war upon the barren Trans-Pecos.”
Kit & Jerry took us on a driving tour this morning after a fine breakfast at one of their favorite places to eat, called “Burger & Shake”.
It was at breakfast that we met John & Libby, friends of Kit & Jerry. They are fine folks and very interesting to talk to. John still works with FEMA and travels a lot. It was nice to meet these good people.
Once we finished our meal and said so long to John & Libby, Jerry drove us to the Seminole Indian Scout Cemetery, where the remains of Indian scouts and their descendents are buried.
We saw the graves of four Medal of Honor recipients.
Not many people may know that Indian scouts for the U.S. Cavalry had been awarded our nations highest honor for bravery in combat. Remember that they were fighting against other Indians.
On the return to our RV, Jerry took us to see a concrete water tower. I have a picture to show you. Imagine, a concrete water tower!
Thanks to the kindness of our hosts, Marilyn & I were able to take a lot of pictures today, of the many historic buildings here at Fort Clark.
I will post many of those pictures for you also.
Later in the afternoon, Jerry granted me the use of his marvelous new grill, to grill a pork loin marinated in a lemon garlic marinade. Along with the pork loin, I added some boneless country style ribs, to the grill, brushing them with “Blues Hog” BBQ sauce during the last 5 minutes of the cooking.
I also cooked whole, two of the 1015 onions, one with butter and brown sugar and the other with butter and Worchester sauce, wrapping them in tin foil to cook on the grill.
Marilyn has recruited my help in drying the dishes for her, and then we will join Kit outdoors on the patio to watch “Survivor”.
We have a big day planned for tomorrow but we’ll all have to wait to see what that day will have in store…..