The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948

YVotes and DocmHHets
WV. . reema#'s /Report oi the eighth military
Department
Edited by M. L. CRIMMINS
(Continued)
III*-FORT EWELL'- (Inspected June 11 and 12, 1853.)
Fort Ewell is situated on the right, or south, bank of the Nueces
river at the point where it is crossed by the road leading from San
Antonio to Laredo, in latitude 28 12' North, and longitude, about
99 West. Its only mail communications are by special expresses
weekly to San Antonio and to Corpus Christi. The river at the ford
is about 75 feet wide and 41/2 feet in depth, but it frequently over-
flows its banks covering the bottoms and salt marshes on either side
to the extent of a mile. The site of the post is somewhat elevated,
but the surrounding country is a low salt marsh. Suitable timber or
stone for building cannot be obtained within less distance than ten
or fifteen miles, good grazing for animals cannot be found in the
vicinity, and every attempt thus far to make a kitchen garden has
been unsuccessful. Indeed a less inviting spot for occupation by
troops cannot well be conceived. I had an opportunity of judging
personally of its discomforts, for a rain storm of a few hours hap-
pening to come on at the time of my inspection detained me there
nearly five days, and even then I was compelled to swim my animals
to get away. The country was flooded for twenty miles in every
direction, and so rapid was the rise of the waters that the herders
who were out with the troop horses saved themselves and their ani-
mals with some difficulty, and one or two horses were drowned. The
site was no doubt originally chosen because of its being on the old
Indian thoroughfare to the Rio Grande, and without a knowledge
of the serious objections to it above mentioned. I understand an
excellent positiont can be found on the Nueces some 40 miles above,
at a place called the "Willow Crossing." The river being narrow
with high banks at this point, can be easily bridged, and fine timber,
*To be abandoned.
IsFort Ewell was located on the west bank of the Nueces River at the crossing
of the San Antonio and Laredo Road, in present La Salle County. It was estab-
lished on May 18, 1852, and abandoned on October 3, 1854. Hamersly, Complete
Army Register, Pt. II, p. 133; Texas Almanac, x936, p. 126.
tPosition selected by Genl Smith, but ordered not to be occupied Adjt. Gen's
letter of Nov 4.

Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 51, July 1947 - April, 1948. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101119/. Accessed December 25, 2014.