Posted 6 months ago
By John Axtell
The big construction project this summer at Fort Robinson State Park will expand the park’s group lodging and meeting capabilities.
Fort Robinson Superintendent Mike Morava says the building on the northwest end of the parade ground is a modern version of one of the officer’s quarters from late in the 1800’s.
The original building, which had the designation B-14, was a 2-story frame structure with sandstone foundation. It’s new counterpart will looke the same, but with modern amenities, and will serve as a group lodge, interpretive center, and meeting room.
It’s the result of a donation from a private citizen, and Morava says it will fill in a gap in Fort Robinson’s history while meeting a growing demand for lodging at the park.
While the new version of the B-14 Officers Quarters will meet ADA standards, only the main floor will be handicapped-accessible. Morava says it’s a necessary compromise between access and history, since the original building did not have an elevator.
Although the building had been demolished before Fort Robinson became a state park, its history was well documented through records compiled by Tom Buecker, the longtime curator of the park’s Nebraska State Historical Society Museum…including many photographs and plan drawings.
Since the site was known, the Historical Society conducted a dig led by Amy Koch and Dr Terry Steinacher, its archaeologists headquartered at Fort Robinson. A 14-member field crew completed its work before construction began, but there’s been no formal announcement of any findings.