Tour Stop B: General Crook's Headquarters
Upon the recommendation of Lieutenant General William T. Sherman,
in 1866 the Adjutant General's office created the Department of the
Platte, which included present day Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah and
portions of Montana and southern Idaho. As departmental headquarters,
Fort Omaha presided over supply and administration posts across this
territory and coordinated campaigns against the Sioux, Northern
Cheyenne, Nez Perce and Ute.
In 1870, the War Department authorized 14 permanent posts under
Fort Omaha, each with an average of 282 men. Later in that decade,
Montana was transferred to the Department of Dakota.
Soldiers guarded construction crews, protected mail coaches,
extended roads and telegraph services, delivered Native American
annuities, assisted farmers devastated by grasshoppers, facilitated
mapping and several times intervened in civil insurrections.
This large building was constructed in 1879 as General Crook's
headquarters. In 1881, General Crook moved his headquarters downtown
to be near the Union Pacific terminal and warehouses. The building
then served as a hospital until the post was abandoned in 1896.