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Military Outpost

MILITARY OUTPOST:  As Indian relations grew worse, the U.S. Government found it necessary to station military troops at strategic locations along the Oregon, California and Mormon Trails.  From Fort Laramie west, troops were garrisoned at several of the old Overland Stage Stations including the Deer Creek Station (1862-1865).  Military duties included guarding wagon trains, keeping the telegraphh in repair and chasing after Indians.  By 1865, the government and the Indians were engaged in open warfare.  More troops were brought in.  Nine companies of the 11th Kansas Cavalry were at Deer Creek Station on April 18 when Collister received a message telling of the assassination of President Lincoln.  On July 27, following the attack on Platte Bridge Station, two companies of troops were dispatched from Deer Creek to reinforce its sister station to the west (shortly renamed “Fort Casper”, where Casper, Wyoming now stands).  In August of 1866, Indians burned the telegraph station to the ground.  It was never rebuilt.  Traffic on the old trails dwindled and Deer Creek Station became part of the past.