In 1855 Camp Colorado was probably temporarily at a site near what is now Ebony, in Mills County. In August 1856, Troops A and F and United States Cavalry under Maj. Earl Van Dorn moved the camp to Mukewater Creek about six miles north of the Colorado River, on the route between Fort Belknap and Fort Mason in Coleman County. Because of sickness among the soldiers, the post was moved in July 1857 about twenty-two miles north to Jim Ned Creek. Commanders who succeeded Van Dorn included Edmund Kirby Smith, Lawrence S. (Sul) Ross, John Bell Hood, and Fitzhugh Lee. Robert E. Lee visited the camp at least twice on tours of inspection. From 1857 to 1861 Camp Colorado was the center of Coleman County's settlements. The camp's buildings were of adobe with shingled roofs and pine-plank floors; the lumber, doors, and windows were hauled by ox team from East Texas. Outside communication was through a post office and a telegraph line along the Wire Road between the camp and army headquarters at San Antonio. People settled at all of the nearby waterholes. In 1857, J. C. Mullins, a graduate of Yale University, settled east of the camp and taught school under an elm tree on the post.
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