Brackettville is home to a well-preserved, former military fort that has a rich legacy connected uniquely to several Buffalo Soldier infantry and cavalry units. The Black Seminole Indian Scouts were stationed at Fort Clark as well, from 1872 until 1914, serving alongside Buffalo Soldiers specifically of the 24th and 25th U.S. Infantry. The only African American cavalry division in World War II, the 2nd U.S. Cavalry Division, also has a solid place in history here.
Fort Clark was established in 1852 as part of a strategic U.S. Army installation of forts between San Antonio and El Paso. Timelines, buildings, and artifacts have all been meticulously preserved and researched by the Fort Clark Historical Society. The Old Guardhouse, built in the 1870s, serves as a museum which contains pictures, uniforms, and memorabilia. This building was restored in 1976, and quickly became the home of community donated items. Curator from 1986 to 1996, retired U.S. Navy Lieutenant Commander Donald A. Swanson built up the museum by carefully cataloging the collection and significantly improving displays. Because of his work, the archives here are an instrumental source for genealogists, researchers, and military history experts. Open Saturday and Sunday, from 1 to 4 p.m., the museum accepts all donations to further preservation.
Photo: @iheartcreative via Twenty20
Lodging, camping, and RV facilities are available at Fort Clark, along with fun charms such as a spring-fed pool which is the third-largest in Texas, a playground, and a beautiful golf course. Several other historical markers can be found around the area, including the Palisado Building Kitchen, a marker for Juan A. Avila, and the iconic Fort Clark Post Theater. Visit Fort Clark and catch a glimpse of this horse-cavalry post which remained active until 1946. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is well worth a respite stop for all travelers.