Old Government Road

    • Old Government Road, Lancaster Hill roadside park 30.5 miles west of Ozona on U.S. 290, linked Army posts between Fort Clark and Fort Stockton.

      • Route of march and troop supply on Texas frontier. Followed in part pre-Columbian Indian trails and "Old Chihuahua Trail" that ran from San Antonio to El Paso and Mexico. In 1840s this was extended to Gulf Coast Port of Indianola where imported goods arrived from the United States and Europe, and were freighted out to be exchanged in Chihuahua for ore of silver and gold, leather goods, and other products. In 1848 water holes and camp sites were marked as this road was re-charted for use of U.S. troops sent to protect Texas frontiers from Indian invasions. Army posts were built along this road: Fort Clark, between San Antonio and Del Rio, 1852; Fort Davis, in the Davis Mountains, 1854; Camp Lancaster, at this site, became Fort Lancaster in 1856. Camp Hudson and Fort Stockton were founded in 1857 and 1859. With all the army traffic, trail won new name of "Government Road." Pioneer settlers, adventurers, California-bound gold seekers--even camel trains in government service--traveled this road in spite of frequent encounters with Comanches, Apaches, Kiowas, and other Indians. The Army finally stationed troops in continuous picket line from San Antonio to El Paso. However, it was not until 1870 that relatively safe passage was assured.



Back to Markers

Back to Main Page

TXGenWeb Project

We Love RootsWeb