Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Fort Griffin on US Highway 283 north of Albany is one of those places. The Fort is on a bluff overlooking the Clear Fork of the Brazos River and the important but nasty little town of Fort Griffin on the flats below it.
Fort Griffin was originally a barrier Fort set right out in the Comancheria in 1867 after the Civil War. To the north is old Camp Cooper and the ill-fated Clear Fork Comanche reservation site. The Butterfield Overland Stage ran nearby on its way west. And the great Western Cattle Trail poured millions of longhorns through the area on the way to Dodge City. That's just part of the story of this old place. There is so much history between Albany and Throckmorton, it's hard to imagine or visualize.
Now there's a fine map that captures a lot of it. On a recent business trip to Fort Griffin, Jan Lenoir at the Visitor Center showed me a map that she had drawn as a handout to visitors. Just a simple 8-1/2 by 11 sheet run off on the office color inkjet printer, it covers everything with clarity, simplicity and detail.
Not only is this a good map for the present, but in my opinion it is a map that will be valuable as an historic record and reference in the future. It certainly has a place in my files on Fort Griffin and the Texas frontier forts.
Fort Griffin on Facebook.