The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003 Page: 181
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2002 Archeological Investigations at the Battle of Red River Site
Figure 2. Portion of an 1875 map showing the general location of the Battle of Red River.
Courtesy of National Archives, RG 393, Missouri-z.
Another potential problem was the unknown nature of the archeologi-
cal integrity of the site. Given that the battle was a quickly moving battle
spread over a large area, it was uncertain whether the battle-related arti-
facts would be concentrated sufficiently in certain areas to allow identifi-
cation of specific battle events, or whether they would be so spread out
that interpretation would be impossible. Also not known was whether
such large numbers of artifacts had been collected and removed from the
site over the years that interpretation of the remaining artifacts would be
difficult or impossible.
These were the primary challenges to the project as we began the
search for the Battle of Red River site. Using the available military docu-
ments and various published accounts of the battle, we believed that the
area around the Griffin Hills and Wagon Wheel Gap in present southern
Armstrong County was in fact the probable battle location. The terrain in
this area closely matches that described in the accounts and military
records. Specifically, the broad, level plain that was crossed by the troops
jutant General, Sept. 1, 1874. Scout Thomas McFadden writes in his diary that the running battle
"brought us to the banks of Red River about ten miles from where the first attack was made." Car-
riker (ed.), "Thomas McFadden's Diary," 205. Based on the distribution of the artifacts recovered
during the archeological investigations, the site encompasses approximately 22,238 acres, or
about 34.75 square miles.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 106, July 2002 - April, 2003, periodical, 2003; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101223/m1/233/: accessed June 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.