Fort Boise (1)

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Fort Boise (1863-1913) - Established on 4 Jul 1863 by Major Pinkney Lugenbeel also known as Camp Boise and Boise Barracks. Between 1863 and 1879 the fort was a base for operations against hostile Indians during the Snake War and during the Bannock War in 1876 it was the field headquarters for operations against the Nez Perce Indians.

Fort Boise Plan
Fort Boise 1863 Officer's Quarters


Fort Boise was near the intersection of the Oregon Trail and the roads connecting the Owyhee (Silver City) and Boise Basin (Idaho City) mining areas, both booming at the time. The fort's site had the necessary combination of grass, water, wood, and stone. With three companies of infantry and one of cavalry, Major Lugenbeel set to work building quarters for five companies. They built a mule-driven sawmill on Cottonwood Creek, got a lime kiln underway, and opened a sandstone quarry at the small mesa known as Table Rock. Lugenbeel's greatest problem was the lure of the Boise Basin mines — more than 50 men deserted within the first few months.

Fort Boise (1) Partial Commanders List (edit list)
Assumed Relieved Rank Name Cullum Notes
1889-12-30 1890-06-05  Maj. Rafferty, William A. 2072
1902-09-15 1903-08-31  Maj. Hein, Otto L. 2358
1908-03-04 1908-05-08 •Lt. Col. Gresham, John C. 2626
1908-09-16 1910-02-28 •Lt. Col. Gresham, John C. 2626
1910-02-28 1910-09-12  Maj. Brett, Lloyd M. 2793 Cullum entry has a slight overlap with the next
1910-08-28 1911-03-09 •Lt. Col. Shunk, William A. 2770 Cullum entry has a slight overlap with the preceding
Dates are formatted in yyyy-mm-dd to sort correctly.
The Cullum Number is the graduation order from the United States Military Academy by year and class rank and links to a page for the officer on the website version of the Cullum Register. Listings without a Cullum Number indicate that the person was not a graduate of the United States Military Academy.

Current Status

The U.S. Army left the post in 1912, and the Idaho National Guard occupied it until 1919, when the Public Health Service obtained it for veterans of World War I and tuberculosis patients. In 1938 the Veterans Administration acquired the site, and its successor, the DVA, presently operates the Boise VA Medical Center. In 1957, the Idaho Elks Rehabilitation Hospital was built on a portion of the old fort's land. The Federal Building (& U.S. Court House), built in 1968, also occupies a section of the site.

Location: Located on Fort Street in downtown Boise, Ada County, Idaho.

Maps & Images

Lat: 43.620512 Long: -116.187737

  • Multi Maps from ACME
  • Maps from Bing
  • Maps from Google
  • Elevation: 2800'

See Also:



Visited: 12 Oct 2009

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