Adobe Walls Settlement
Adobe Walls exhibit at Boomtown Revisited Museum in Borger, Texas
Adobe Walls was the name of a trading post in the Texas Panhandle, just north of the Canadian River. In 1845, an Adobe fort was built there to house the post, but it was blown up by the traders three years later after repeated Indian attacks. In 1864, the ruins were the site of one of the largest battles ever to take place on the Great Plains. Colonel Christopher "Kit" Carson led 300 volunteers from New Mexico against a force of thousands of Indians; the results of the battle were indecisive, though Carson was acclaimed as a hero for successfully striking a blow against the Indians and for leading his men out of the trap with minimal casualties. This is known as the First Battle of Adobe Walls.
After the decimation of the buffalo herd in Kansas the hunters moved south and west to continue practicing their profession. In June 1874 (ten years after the first battle), a group of enterprising businessmen had set up two stores near the ruins of the old trading post in an effort to rekindle the town of Adobe Walls. The complex quickly grew to include two stores, a corral, a restaurant, and a blacksmith shop, all of which served the population of 200-300 buffalo hunters in the area. By late June there had been talk of imminent Indian problems and, in recent weeks, hunters had actually been killed. Some 28 or 29 persons were present at Adobe Walls, including James Hanrahan the saloon owner, a 20-year old Bat Masterson, William "Billy" Dixon (whose famous long-distance rifle shot effectively ended the siege), California Joe (according to a somewhat unreliable account of California Joe Milner's life, or he may have been at the First Battle of Adobe Walls), and one woman, the wife of cook William Olds.
I've been reading S.C. Gwynne's new book about Quanna Parker and the Comanches and have the desire to pay my respects at the Kiowa and Comanche village sites -- or at least the vicinity. Maybe get there next Spring.
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Photo taken in Borger, TX, USA
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