Monday, March 10, 2008

Fort McKavett, Texas

In 1869 the 38th Infantry was eliminated and Calvin Williams was transferred to the 24th Infantry, headquartered at Ft. McKavett, Texas, which was under the command of Col. Ranald Mackenzie. Today Fort McKavett is a beautifully restored frontier fort situated on a hilltop about 150 miles west of San Antonio. Calvin and his company arrived there on foot in the fall of 1869, and he was stationed there until his honorable discharge on April 10, 1870.

The soldiers at Ft. McKavett protected settlers, stage lines, supply trains and survey crews from attacks by Indians and outlaws. One of Calvin's army buddies, W.B. Ball, was injured in such an attack. The first African-American to earn the Medal of Honor after the Civil War was Sgt. Emanuel Stance, stationed at Ft. McKavett with Calvin.

If you are in the area, I highly recommend a drive to Ft. McKavett. It is beautiful country, and the Fort gives a real sense of what life was like for Calvin and other soldiers of the Old West.

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