• Photo by: Max Kandler

    Fort Davis

    National Historic Site Texas

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  • Museum Closure

    The park auditorium is undergoing major rehabilitation and can only accommodate 15 persons watching the film at once. We play it every half hour, or on an as needed basis. Completion date; spring 2015. Everything else is open, as usual, at the park.

On-Site Programs for Grades K-3

1. Reconnaissance Missions: Time—Approx. 2-3 hours

Students, as infantry or cavalry soldiers, go on simulated military reconnaissance missions in small groups with sponsors to explore the fort. Marching & carrying replica army guidons (flags) and organized in military fashion using a map, their mission is to find answers to questions on a clipboard. This multi-sensory, interdisciplinary program incorporates cooperative learning techniques. For closure, students at the end play a history game—with points tallied to see which group did the best job on its recon mission.

2. Scavenger Hunt: Time—1 1/2 hours

Divided into small groups with sponsors, students visit different areas of the fort, including the restored buildings and museum, searching for particular historic objects. The time available for your group’s visit determines how long students work on this open-ended activity. For historical context, background information on the various scavenger hunt items is provided. At the end, students’ lists are compared to see which group found the most correct answers. Later, students can research historical items that pique their interest. Closure activity is provided.

3. Park Video:

In the auditorium, a 15-minute video relating the story of Fort Davis shows every half hour to park visitors. If you wish your students to see this video, please tell the ranger at the Visitor Center desk. Please do not walk into auditorium while video is in progress. An expanded, 30-minute version of the video is available for purchase ($15.96 + $1.16 tax), if you wish to show it to students in the classroom. You may order it by mail for an extra $5 shipping.

Off-site Materials for grades K-3

Down Load Pre and Post Visit Activities and Worksheets 860kb PDF file

TEKS: All educational programs and materials are curriculum based and are in full compliance with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS).

TEKS—Reconnaissance Missions:

*students understand how historical events and individuals shaped our history and our national identity;

*students apply critical thinking skills to gather and organize information, identify options, and choose solutions while working with others.

*students use a simple geographic tools: maps and photographs

*students are exposed to a multi-cultural story of the settlement of the American West

TEKS--Scavenger Hunt

*students apply critical thinking skills and use teamwork and map-reading skills

Did You Know?

Painting of the first Fort Davis by Authur Lee.

On October 23, 1854, General Persifor F. Smith, in command of the Department of Texas, issued the order officially establishing Fort Davis. Smith, who had personally selected the site, named the post in honor of Secretary of War Jefferson Davis.