Text by Kristine Davis & Photographs by Derrick Birdsall
The Texas Forts Trail contains a brief history, memorable events, and notable figures of each fort. You will read about life on the frontier when Comanche raids were feared by all, the Butterfield Overland Mail stage route that stopped at three of the forts, famous soldiers like Robert E. Lee and William Tecumseh Sherman who visited the forts, the Warren Wagon Train Massacre, and what it was like to be a soldier on patrol in the mid-1800s.
This book celebrates the Texas Forts Trail, one of the ten driving trail regions created in 1968 by the Texas Highway Department. The ten regions with their thematic driving loops provided a manageable way in which to tour the vast state of Texas.
In the late 1990s, the Texas Historical Commission resurrected the concept as the Texas Heritage Trails Program. The first region to be re-authorized was the Texas Forts Trail, and for the past fifteen years this organization has worked to promote the 650-mile trail that winds through 29 counties.
Eight forts and a Spanish presidio represent some of the best preserved frontier military posts in the West, reflecting a wide range of displays, terrains, and management organizations.
- Fort Richardson - Jacksboro
- Fort Belknap - Graham/Newcastle
- Fort Griffin - Albany
- Fort Phantom Hill - Abilene
- Fort Chadbourne - Bronte
- Fort Concho - San Angelo
- Fort McKavett - Menard
- Fort Mason - Mason
- Presidio de San Saba - Menard
Derrick Birdsall is Park Superintendent at the Farmers Branch Historical Park. Combining a newfound passion for photography with a life-long love of history, he traveled thousands of miles across the old Texas frontier to complete this project. More of his photography can be seen at www.facebook.com/UnaffectedPhotography.
Kristine Davis has taught journalism courses at Baylor University and redesigned the Baylor Center for International Education website. She is currently a marketing associate for Chisholm Crossing, an organization dedicated to the revitalization of down-town Waco, Texas.
Dimensions (inches): 8.5 x 11
Weight (pounds): 2.15