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Fort Concho -- Past, Present and Future

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Cory Robinson, left, and Cindy Bishop stand in front of the row of restored officers’ quarters at Fort Concho National Historic Landmark in San Angelo, Texas. Photo by Gary Cutrer. By Robert Bluthardt
Director, Fort Concho
National Historic Landmark

Published November 2009

To the many people who drive by daily on South Oakes Street just south of downtown San Angelo, Fort Concho has been here forever, and in a way, they are right. The two dozen limestone buildings that surround the currently lush Parade Ground date from the late 1860s and 1870s, and they represented the first permanent structures and settlement in the region. In the years that followed, “Santa Angela” established itself as a “whiskey and sin” village across the Concho River to separate the soldiers from their monthly pay. Over the next 22 years, the fort and the town grew and prospered together, and both underwent many changes when the U. S. Army marched away fron Fort Concho forever in June 1889.

The arrival of a railroad connection in 1888 and a second, direct rail line in 1909, helped San Angelo grow into an agricultural and ranching trade center. The old post had new occupants as civilians took up the homes that the soldiers abandoned.

The Santa Rita oil boom to the west in 1923 brought vast wealth to the city and soon the community had a new city hall, county courthouse, movie theater, hotels, office buildings, churches and a new neighborhood, appropriately named Santa Rita. Much of modern San Angelo stems from that 1923 oil strike. Meanwhile, historic preservation of Fort Concho starts in the 1920s, with the dreams and vision of Mrs. Ginevra Wood Carson, an effort that continues today nearly 90 years later.

Today, Fort Concho is considered among the best preserved frontier forts west of the Mississippi, and the long effort to save and restore it is as old as those of nationally known sites like Colonial Williamsburg in Virginia and Greenfield Village near Detroit. The fort board and staff have been guided by a simple premise to physically restore the post to its 1870s appearance, but make it serve the widest possible audience within the broadest level of public service and education. That expanded mission within the heart of a major West Texas city justifies the motto, “Not Just a Frontier Fort.”


Decent Bids Offered at TAGRA Sale

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Angora ranchers bid on fullblood hair goats at the annual Texas Angora Goat Raisers Association Sale in July. At the Texas Angora Goat Raisers Association 90th Annual Show and Sale held July 24–25 in Junction, Texas, Angora goat ranchers gathered to show their best and buy new genetics for flock improvement. The sale was dedicated to longtime Angora raiser Jack Groff. Auctioneer Mark Tillman wielded the hammer.

Champion Sale Buck, sold by Triple S Angoras, was purchased by the Pfluger Ranch, Eden , Texas, for $600.  Champion Sale Doe, owned by Bonnie and Dale Naumann, was sold to Cerulean Farm, Harrah, Okla., for $650.    

High selling doe of the sale was offered by Bonnie and Dale Naumann and sold to Alan Stieler, Rocksprings, Texas, for $700.
High selling buck of the sale was offered by Ted Smith and sold to Seco Mayfield for $625.    

The day of the TAGRA sale in Junction, Pat and Tracy Ross from Harper had for sale mohair products including knitted products and yarns. They were selling these Angora goat dolls made with mohair locks.The day of the TAGRA sale in Junction, Pat and Tracy Ross from Harper had for sale mohair products including knitted products and yarns. They were selling these Angora goat dolls made with mohair locks. In the show on Friday, July 24, the “finale class”,  Annie Auld and Bob Davis Special Award $1000 winner-take-all went to Dale and Bonnie Naumann of Spicewood, Texas. The descendants of Bob and Annie Auld Davis have sponsored this event for 10 years. The previous winners are1999—Triple S Angoras, 2000—Triple S Angoras, 2001—Cindy Sites, 2002—Cindy Sites, 2003—Dale and Bonnie Naumann, 2004—Triple S Angoras, 2005—Dale and Bonnie Naumann, 2006—Bo Evans, 2007—Dale and Bonnie Naumann, and 2008—Kim and Bonnie Turner.    

TAGRA members expressed appreciation for the Davis family support and dedication to the Angora industry as well as their show. Show and sale organizers said they would like to thank all the buyers who attended the sale and said they look forward to seeing everyone again next year.           

Last Updated on Tuesday, 01 September 2009 14:56

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