The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935 Page: 34
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34 Southwestern Historical Quarterly
$1.50 a bushel. Fresh vegetables were of the utmost importance
to the command in order to prevent scurvy.
The Surgeon General reported 140 cases of scurvy in eleven
months at Fort Stockton in 1868 but only four cases at Fort
McKavett in twelve months of 1868 and 1869'.
The watercress, which was grown the year round at the springs,
was used extensively. Fresh butter could be bought for 50 cents
per pound, chickens for 50 cents each and eggs for 30 cents per
dozen while milk cost 10 cents per quart. In 1875 there were
three stages a week from Austin and San Antonio, and the El Paso
San Antonio Stage Line had a station sixteen miles below the post
at Coughlin's ranch.
The elevated location of the post, the dryness of the atmosphere,
and the delightful morning and evening breezes throughout the
late spring, summer and fall made the climate very pleasant. Of
course, it was hot during the middle of the day. The pure
bubbling spring from the limestone cliff near the post furnished
excellent water. The mean temperature for July, 1875, was about
850, and for December was 450 F. The annual rainfall was
about 20 inches.
In 1876 and 1877 there were three prominent New Yorkers
stationed at Fort McKavett, General HI. B. Clitz, Col. Nathaniel
Prime1 and Capt. Charles D. Viele. Among their visitors was
young Elliot Roosevelt, who came out evidently to enjoy the
mountain air, hunting and fishing. His daughter published in
1932 five letters he wrote from Fort McKavett in her book "Hunt-
ing Big Game in the 80s." He was the younger brother of the
late President Theodore Roosevelt, the father of the wife of Presi-
dent Franklin D. Roosevelt and the latter's godfather. Elliot
Roosevelt, a slim boy of 16 years, arrived at Fort McKavett in
February, 1876. HIe brought letters from his father and mother
to Colonel Prime, who looked after the brave young tenderfoot.
He tells of the assistance given him by Lieutenant Gregory Barrett,
Jr., who later lost his life during the Spanish American War.
'Nathaniel Prime. Appointed First Lieutenant, 17th Infantry, May
14, 1861; Regimental Quartermaster, Nov. 2, 1861, to Aug. 9, 1862;
Captain, Aug. 9, 1862; Transferred to 26th Infantry. Sept. 21, 1866; Re-
signed, Oct. 31, 1866; Reinstated, Jan. 24, 1867; Transferred to 10th
Infantry, May 19, 1869; Retired, March 20, 1879; Bvt. Maj., Aug. 1,
1864, for Gallant Services in the Battle of Spottsylvania, Va., and
Lieutenant Colonel, Aug. 1, 1864, for Gallant Services in the Battle of
the Wilderness, Va.; died July 8, 1885.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 38, July 1934 - April, 1935, periodical, 1935; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117143/m1/42/: accessed September 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.