Saturday, May 18, 2013
Covering Dallas, Monmouth, Independence, Falls City and surrounding areas since 1868
July 17, 2012
KINGS VALLEY -- Fort Hoskins was built in 1856 and was one of three forts established in Western Oregon inside the boundaries of the Coast Indian Reservation, where tribes had been forcibly resettled in 1855.
The fort was occupied by U.S. soldiers and later by infantry volunteers from Oregon, California and Washington.
Its purpose was allowing the military to monitor Native Americans and keep them from attacking white settlers -- and to protect the Native Americans from the settlers, said Phil Hays, chairman of the Benton County Natural Areas and Parks Advisory Board.
Philip Sheridan, who became a Civil War general, was in charge of construction at the fort and had the Commander's House built in 1857. It was actually occupied by Capt. Christopher Augur, who also went on to fight in the Civil War.
No Indian-settler battles were ever fought at Fort Hoskins, which was decommissioned in 1865. A year later, the Frantz Family bought the site, while the buildings were auctioned off, burned or demolished for materials. The Commander's House is the only surviving structure.
Hays said it's uncertain when exactly how long after the fort closed the two-story house was transported, or if it stood somewhere else before its present home in Pedee.
--Sources: forthoskins.com, co.benton.or.us.