|To get to Fort Towson, take Hwy 70 either east of Hugo or west of Idabel. The road to
the fort lies on the western side of the city of Fort Towson, almost directly across the
entrance to Raymond Gary State Park. Admission is free, but donations are accepted!
|Fort Towson is a small place, with a few relics. The 1857 Cannon and the cistern and flagpole grace the fort's parade grounds.
|Fort Towson: Contentious
Fort in the Red River Valley
|The well on the parade grounds has been re-constructed. Most of the fort lies in ruins. The fort was burned in the late 1820s by white settlers
who resented American border patrol between the U.S. and Mexican Texas, and Indian settlement by the Shawnees, Caddos, and Choctaws.
Though re-built, further destruction before and after the Civil War led locals to the conclusion that it was okay to dismantle the old structures
to build their own homes.
|Choctaws and Chickasaws settled around the fort, where they built Indian academies, churches, farms, plantations, and towns. The first major
settlement around the fort was Doaksville, named after the trading post established by Josiah Doaks, a white man from Mississippi who
followed the Choctaws into Indian Territory to advocate on their behalf. The village became a trading center. The need to supply Fort Towson
was also the impetus to clear the Great Raft of the Red River north of Natchitoches.
|Questions or comments? E-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org
|How to get there
|Grant Foreman, the first Oklahoma historian, took an inventory of historical sites at the turn of the 20th century. He took this photo of the
barrack ruins in 1900. (Oklahoma Historical Society).