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Fort Logan was a military installation located eight miles southwest of Denver, Colorado. It was established in October 1887, when the first soldiers camped on the land, and lasted until 1946, when it was closed following the end of World War II. After the fort closed the site was used as a mental health center and part of the land was set aside for the Fort Logan National Cemetery.[1]

Fort Logan
Denver, Colorado
Fort Logan National Cemetery, Denver, CO, graves IMG 5959.JPG
Graves at Fort Logan National Cemetery on the site of the old Fort Logan burial grounds.
Site history
BuiltOctober 31, 1887 (1887-10-31)[1]
Built byUnited States Army
In use1887 – 1946
Fate75 Acres became Fort Logan National Cemetery, much of the remainder given to Colorado Mental Health Institute



Toward the end of the 19th century, conflicts between Native Americans and expanding American interests were becoming less common. The United States Army began looking to cut costs by closing isolated frontier forts and start using the railroads to transport troops and supplies. In 1886, prominent Denver citizens, looking to boost the local economy, raised money and donated land to bring an Army fort to the area. In October 1887 the first soldiers arrived from posts in Kansas and camped in 26 tents on the site that was at the time simply called the "Camp Near the City of Denver."[1]

The camp was a treeless plateau located about eight miles southwest of the city. Unofficially the local citizens began to refer to it as "Fort Sheridan" after General Philip Sheridan who had selected the site. Sheridan preferred having his name associated with a fort north of Chicago and on 5 April 1889, had the camp designated "Fort Logan" after John Alexander Logan.[1]

This new "urban-type" fort began construction quickly, though the final buildings were not completed until 1897. The fort had a parade ground and quarters, including the 1888 building for Field Officer's Quarters by Frank J. Godavent which still stands today and was restored in 2009.[2] As infantry barracks were completed, the 7th Infantry left Fort Laramie, Wyoming, and made Fort Logan their permanent home.[1][3] In 1894, the first cavalry units were posted to Fort Logan and remained until 1904.[4]

Troops from Fort Logan participated in military actions right from the start. In December 1890, troops were deployed to South Dakota to intercept Sioux tribal bands. In 1894 troops were called in to quell civil strife resulting from Governor Davis Hanson Waite's siege of city hall. Later in the year they were deployed south during the Pullman Strike. Units from Fort Logan also participated in the 1898 Spanish–American War.[1]

In 1908 the site added 340 acres, bringing their total to 940 acres. In 1909 the fort was made a recruit depot and continued in that role until 1922. In 1927 an Engineering unit occupied Fort Logan and made major updates to the site during the Great Depression.[1]

On 1 March 1941, the Army Air Corps moved an Army Air Forces Clerical School to Fort Logan from Lowry Army Airfield.[5][6][7] Thus the installation came under the control of Western Technical Training Command. In 1942 the Administrative Inspector School was opened which trained air inspectors.[8][9] In April 1944, Fort Logan was transferred from the Western Technical Training Command to the AAF Air Service Command for training injured soldiers in civilian trades.[10] In addition the fort was briefly used as a prisoner of war camp in 1943 and 1944. After the war the fort was declared surplus and negotiating over what to do with the land commenced.[1]

Some land was sold, 75 acres (including the burial ground) were set aside for the Fort Logan National Cemetery, and the rest was donated to the state of Colorado. The state used the site as a mental health center and the first patients were admitted in 1961. In 1991 the center was renamed to the Colorado Mental Health Institute at Fort Logan.[1]


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Ballard, Jack (2011). Fort Logan. Charleston, S.C: Arcadia Pub. ISBN 9780738575827.
  2. ^ Norm Brown (October 2009). "Historic Ft. Logan Welcomes Your Visit" (PDF). The Littleton Examiner. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  3. ^ Richard West Sellars (26 April 2011). "War And Consequences: The American Indian Movement Vs. The National Park Service At Fort Laramie, Part II". National Parks Traveler. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  4. ^ "History and Timeline". Friends of Historic Fort Logan. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  5. ^ Craven, Wesley Frank; Cate, James Lea, eds. (1983) [1949]. "Chapter 4: THE DEVELOPMENT OF BASE FACILITIES". The Army Air Forces in World War II (Terry Welshan webpage transcription)|format= requires |url= (help). University of Chicago Press. ISBN 1-4289-1587-7. OCLC 9828710. Retrieved 11 February 2013. To clear Lowry for armament and photographic training expansion, the Air Corps secured Fort Logan, Colorado, and moved its clerical course there in March 1941.
  6. ^ Paul Kurtz (25 August 1943). "Sports Stew – Served Hot". The Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved 11 February 2013. Pvt. Johnny Bunardzya ... is attending the Army Air Forces' clerical school at Fort Logan, Colo.
  7. ^ "Harold L. Baird". Wing of Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  8. ^ "Biographies: BRIGADIER GENERAL CORNELIUS J. MARA". United States Air Force. 18 March 1953. Retrieved 11 February 2013. In August 1942, [Cornelius J. Mara] was named commandant of the Administrative Inspector School at Fort Logan, Colo.
  9. ^ "Obituaries: George McLean". 3 March 2012. Retrieved 11 February 2013.
  10. ^ "Ft. Logan to be Convalescent Center Starting at Midnight" (transcription at Denver Post. 14 April 1944. Retrieved 11 February 2013. A new chapter in the 57-year-old history of Fort Logan will begin at midnight Friday when the army air service command will take over the post from the army air forces western technical command, which has operated it since 1 March 1941, as a clerical school. Under the air service command, Fort Logan will become a center for the training of convalescent air force service men returning from overseas.
  11. ^ – Historic Forts of The Old West Archived 15 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit