Fort George Wright
Fort George Wright (1897-1960) - Established 27 Jun 1897, officially opened in 1899 and occupied by Company "M", 24th Black Infantry Regiment, veterans of the Spanish American War and the Indian Wars in Spokane, Spokane County, Washington. First named Fort Wright in G.O. 123, 1899, for Brigadier General George Wright (Cullum 309), who was drowned on 30 Jul 1865 in a shipwreck en route to take command of the Department of the Columbia. Later renamed Fort George Wright in G.O. 97, 1908. Fort George Wright was declared surplus by the U.S. Government in 1957 and sold in 1960. Also known as Military Post at Spokane.
Originally designed as a replacement for Fort Spokane which was fifty miles northwest of the City of Spokane, Washington. In August 1895 the City of Spokane was able to provide the 1000 acres of land with permanent water rights and $48,000 in cash required by the Federal Government to secure the post and construction began in 1896.
The original congressional appropriation for Fort George Wright included facilities for a full regiment of four battalions but funds were provided for facilities supporting less than two battalions. The funds were somehow diverted by Wyoming Senator Francis E. Warren to Fort D.A. Russell in Wyoming, making it a full brigade post and leaving Fort George Wright too small for major missions. Fort D.A. Russell was later renamed Fort Francis E. Warren for Senator Warren. Among the facilities lost in the funding transfer were 50 officer's quarters, 40 NCO quarters, and 6 enlisted barracks.
The first buildings actually constructed were the Quartermaster Stables (Bldg. #835), and the Ammunition Building (Bldg. #841). Senior Officer Quarters were built from 1899 to 1906. Two NCO Quarters were built in 1899, and four NCO Quarters in 1933. The architecture of the fort buildings is almost identical to other western forts of that era, see Fort William Henry Harrison (1).
Fort George Wright served as one of two major fatigue hospitals in the Northwest during World War II and it provided care for military dependents in all of Eastern Washington State. The post was used as NCO and Officers' housing for Fairchild Air Force Base from 1947 to 1958.
Many original buildings remain but have been re-purposed. Parts of the old fort are currently occupied by the Mukogawa Fort Wright Institute, a branch of the Mukogawa Women's University of Nishinomiya, Japan, and Spokane Falls Community College.
Visited: 14 May 2010