Log barracks at Fort Robinson, built in 1883.
Fort Robinson, 1882
By Lori Cox-Paul and James W.
Wengert, Nebraska State Historical
Fort Robinson provides the
following holiday story of devotion
and courage. It can be found in A
Frontier Army Christmas, published by
the Nebraska State
Martin J. Weber,
an old soldier,
then a corporal
in Troop H,
I was ordered
to report to the
Fort Sidney, the
point, to get
goods for the Fort.
A driver and a six mule team were
detailed for the purpose."
Weber carried out his orders and
headed back to Fort Robinson.
"The weather had turned cold and frost
began to fly through the air indicating
a storm. The next morning the storm
broke in all its fury, a regular blizzard
raging. We had to head into the storm.
10 NEBRASKAland • DECEMBER 2013
We made Camp Clarke where the
Sidney-Black Hills Trail crossed the
North Platte River.
"The bridge tender and his wife
advised us to stay until the storm
passed. As much as we disliked to
leave the snug quarters and hot meals,
we bid them goodbye and headed into
"We got to the Running Water stage
station the night of the 23rd. Here we
had hay for mules and horses and a
warm place to cook our supper. How
good that hot coffee tasted. It gave us
new life and courage for the last twenty
miles of our journey.
"The stage had broken the trail to the
top of Breakneck Hill; the storm had
passed, the fort only five miles away.
We got safely down the Breakneck,
crossed White Clay Creek, and broke
trail across the valley, arriving at the
fort on the 24th.
"When I passed the officers'
quarters, the kiddies were all out
running up and down the walks. When
they saw me, they began to shout,
'The Christmas wagon has come!'
Hearing them the officers and men
came out. They could hardly believe it
until the teamster drove his six weary
mules up and we began to unload the
Christmas goods. Even the officers
were willing to help.
"So old Santa arrived, and there was
a Merry Christmas after all had given
up hope of seeing either. I was snow
blind and had to wear dark glasses for
some time after that. One year later
I was promoted to first sergeant of
Troop H." ■
For more information, go to
RG1227-43-2 SFN95613_2 NEBRASKA STATE HISTORICAL SOCIETY
A Brief History