The United States Government built Fort
Selden near the town of Las Cruces in 1865 to protect settlers from outlaws
and Apache Indians, and for a quarter of a century it served its purpose.
The fort housed one company of infantry and cavalry, including units of
black troops whom the Indians called "Buffalo Soldiers."
By 1890, criminals and Apache raiding parties were no longer considered
threats. Fort Selden, like other small army forts in the Southwest, belonged
to another era, and the government decommissioned it in 1891.
Today the stark adobe brick walls of the frontier post evoke a feeling of
personal connection to the past. A visitor center at the monument offers
exhibits on frontier military life during the fort's heyday. Living history
demonstrations of 19th century military life highlight most weekends during