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FORT DAVIS

Population

Altitude 5,050



 
 

General

The little town of Fort Davis, nestled within the beautiful Davis Mountains of West Texas, is often referred to as the Mile-High Town and just as frequently is compared to another well-known town, Denver, which has a similar altitude. Fort Davis is the highest town in the state.

This community traces its beginnings to 1854 when then Secretary of War Jefferson Davis ordered the establishment of a Federal military post in these wild mountain vastness, then known as the Apache Mountains, to protect the growing immigrant traffic headed west to the California gold fields. Seven years later Civil War brought an end to this occupation. In 1867 however, the Fort was reestablished and over the next 24 years was rebuilt and grew into one of the major Federal outposts. Soldiers from this fort, largely the 9th and 10th Cavalry and 24th and 25th Infantry regiments which were made up of the famed Buffalo soldiers recruited from the freed slaves or freedmen following the war, were the effective fighting forces that put an end to the continuing Indian depredations. The Fort was closed in 1891.

Today, Fort Davis can boast what is considered the finest restored western cavalry post in the United States. The Fort Davis National Historic Site is open everyday, seven days a week from 8-5 in the winter and 8-6 during the summer.

This begins what a visitor can enjoy in Fort Davis. The town has numerous places to stay including a historic hotel, motels, bed and breakfasts, an RV park with camp grounds, restaurants and several very nice gift shops.

Nearby is the Davis Mountains State Park with both accommodations and a restaurant. Just up the road is the well-known Prude Ranch, a longtime landmark as a dude ranch.

Beyond all this is the magnificent Scenic Loop that circles 75 miles through the Davis Mountains and includes on its route the McDonald Observatory. This is one of the great astronomy sites in the United States. In January a new 432 inch telescope was opened for visitation. It is the largest in the world open to the public and compare with a similar one located in Hawaii. There are also two other "smaller", 107"and 80", telescopes open to visitors. Three times weekly there are nighttime viewing opportunities where trained astronomers, aided by lesser telescopes, can help you view the heavenly bodies.

Fort Davis is the gateway to the spectacular Big Bend country, which lies south and southeast. This is the wonderland of Texas, and anyone visiting it should be sure to experience Fort Davis.

CHIHUAHUAN DESERT VISITOR CENTER

DAVIS MOUNTAINS STATE PARK

FORT DAVIS NATIONAL HISTORIC SITE

HISTORIC INN: Limpia Hotel

NEIL MUSEUM

OVERLAND TRAIL MUSEUM

SCENIC DRIVE

UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS MCDONALD OBSERVATORY AT MOUNT LOCKE



 
 
 
 

Attractions

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This file was last modified Thursday, 12-Oct-95 01:37:00