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On Saturday, July 16th, 2011Fort Union National Monument will hostits annual First Fort Tours.Constructed in 1851, Fort Union established a permanent U.S.military presence in the area to protect trade and traffic on the Santa Fe Trail, and for the protection of the people in the nearby townships and communities. During the tours of the first Fort Union site park rangers will share stories that the Ninth Military District faced in 1851, and the challenges and sacrifices they surpassed to help to shape the military, historical, and cultural landscape of the Santé Fe Trail and the New Mexico Territory. The one hour tours are at 9:00am, 11:00am, 1:00pm, and 3:00pm. Plan to arrive at the visitor center at least 15 minutes before each scheduled tour. Visitors will be escorted via car caravan to the First Fort at the start of each program. Expect moderate walking and standing on uneven dirt surfaces. Accommodations for handicap accessibility at this site are limited. Visitors are encouraged to dress comfortably, wear a hat and sunscreen, and bring water.