Wednesday, September 25, 2019
Among other things, there are square nails, which are characteristic of the fort's construction, and a bottle with a round bottom. Why round? The stoppers were corks, and they needed to be kept moist. The round bottom meant that the bottles could not be stood on end, which could have resulted in dry corks.
Who would have guessed that?
Wednesday, September 18, 2019
This exhibit from the Fort Fetterman museum shows some of the tools that military doctors used there. Can you identify most of them?
Wednesday, September 11, 2019
One of the most interesting aspects of this building, at least for me, was its modular construction. If you look at the following picture, you can see that there are four distinct sections to the building.
Another thing to note is that, while this is a duplex, the two halves are not identical. The one on the left has an extra window, suggesting that it would be assigned to a more senior officer.
Rank was extremely important in that era, particularly where housing was concerned. When a new officer was assigned to the fort, he was given the housing his rank merited, displacing the current lower-ranking occupant, who then displaced someone else. It was the military version of musical chairs.
Wednesday, September 4, 2019
So, where is this fort? It's just a few miles outside of Douglas, Wyoming, which is right on Interstate 25. (I'm picturing you pulling out your maps or -- more likely -- using a mapping app to see where that is.)
Like many forts of that era, once Fetterman was decommissioned, the buildings were sold and dismantled, leaving little for future historians. But two of the original buildings have been restored and are open to the public from Memorial to Labor Day.
One of them, a former officer's housing duplex, includes this example of an officer's quarters. As you might expect, the precise placement of everything reflects the resident's military training.
If you're interested in learning more about the fort's history, here's a link you may find interesting. And be sure to come back next week to see more pictures of the fort.