Battle of Cabin Creek Site
The Cabin Creek Battlefield is the site on two important engagements between Union and Confederate forces in Indian Territory during the Civil War. The site is located along the Texas Road, a historic trail from Kansas to Texas, near the ford that crosses the creek. The road was used by Indians, white explorers, US Army, pioneer immigrants, trail herds and traders.
The Texas Trail was the conduit for military supplies moving south from Fort Scott, Kansas, to Fort Gibson, Indian Territory, during the war. Several minor skirmishes occurred at the Cabin Creek crossing area. However, the first of two important engagements occurred July 1-2, 1863, and became known as the First Battle of Cabin Creek. It marked an attempt by Confederate forces under Colonel Stand Watie to capture a Federal supply wagon trail. Watie’s troops contested the ford but were driven off by artillery fire, followed by infantry and cavalry charges of the Federal troops. On July 5, 1863, a skirmish with involving the Kansas 2nd Battery, Light Artillery. Later, on July 20, the first Indian Home Guard of the Federal troops skirmished with the Confederates.
The Second Battle of Cabin Creek, on September 19, 1864, was another attempt to capture Federal supplies in route to Fort Gibson. Brigadier Generals Richard Gano and Stand Watie made a night attack on the Federal encampment that routed Union defenders. The supplies and 130 wagons were captured. This was the last major engagement that occurred in Indian Territory during the Civil War.
Preservation efforts began in 1961 when the Vinita Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy purchased a ten-acre parcel in the core battlefield area. Later that same year, the acreage was donated to the Oklahoma Historical Society, which has administered the site.
A circle drive loop within the ten acres provides access to monuments and signage that tells the story of the site. The Friends of Cabin Creek Battlefield, Inc., a group of dedicated citizens, form a non-profit organization that supports the continued preservation efforts.
- Reprinted from Oklahoma Historical Society
442370 E. 367 Road, Big Cabin, OK 74332
Directions: Take I-44 (Will Rogers Turnpike) to Big Cabin exit. Take Highway 69 south to Highway 28 east to Pensacola. Take road 4400 to road 350 - turn left. Battlefield site will be on the left.
Open daily from dawn to dusk.