Nebraska's Largest State Park - Where Crazy Horse Surrendered
Fort Robinson State Park is three miles west of Crawford on Highway 20. It began in 1874 as a military camp at the Red Cloud Indian Agency. Now, the park is one of Nebraska’s most popular attractions.
Lakota warrior Crazy Horse surrendered here in 1877. Two years later, the fort was involved with the Cheyenne Outbreak. Northern Cheyenne fled their Oklahoma reservation for their homeland, but were caught and imprisoned at Fort Robinson. One night in January 1879, under fire from troops, 130 Northern Cheyenne escaped. Sixty-four Cheyenne and 11 soldiers died in the fighting.
“Fort Rob” was home to African-American “Buffalo Soldiers” in the segregated military of the day. In the 20th century, the fort was the world’s largest military remount depot, and in World War II included a K-9 corps training center and a German POW camp.
In addition to original buildings, some barracks have been reconstructed – including those of the Cheyenne and the Buffalo Soldiers. Visitors can enjoy cookouts, trail rides, hiking, and a summer repertory theater at the Post Playhouse. There’s lodging in officers’ houses and camping at 100 sites with electricity and 25 non-electrical pads.
Fort Robinson is open mid-April through mid-November. A state park permit is required. (308) 665-2900.
For more information about Crawford area attractions, contact the Crawford Chamber of Commerce at (866) 665-1817
Listen and Discover more about Fort Robinson
Find out about the history and adventure at Fort Robinson in western Nebraska. Listen to NPR’s Tom Wilmer as he shares segments of his show “Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer," in cooperation with Nebraska Tourism Commission and Geiger and Associates.