Tourists again! We spent the morning rambling around Ft Davis, named after none other than our dear Jefferson Davis. The fort was built in 1854 to protect the San Antonio – El Paso Rd from the increasingly hostile Apaches. The mail & the settlers had to have safe passage west!
The fort itself was pretty cool & had a number of restored buildings. The adobe brick architecture has withstood the elements well. There were over 60 buildings but many have fallen in the past 100 years of civilian misuse. Between 200 -600 soldiers were stationed at Ft Davis at any given time. Their day was regimented by the bugle which began at 6 am & blared 25 more times before sounding lights out at 9:00! Bet that guy was unpopular! The supplies took nearly six weeks to come from San Antonio. The bacon was always moldy & lots of the soldiers got sick from the food. Bread baking was a detail like any other & the quality of the 500 loaves made every day varied greatly! Only one of the 23 soldiers that died at Ft Davis was shot by an Apache. The rest died of accidents, tuberculosis, & dysentery. The doctors probably hurt as much as they helped!
The scenic loop through the Davis Moutains was breathtaking. Their lushness is a sharp contrast to the arid Texas west of San Antonio. We did not see any wildlife at the viewing areas but we saw lots of cattle & ranch gates. The McDonald Observatory was once again surrounded by clouds. The photos cannot capture the enormity of these telescopes on top of 6800 ft high Locke Mt. A gorgeous accmplishment!
Tomorrow we head south to the Big Bend area. Excited, hoping all goes well.