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Officer begins adobe experiment at Fort Concho

July
16
1870

On this day in 1870, army officer John Porter Hatch began an experiment to manufacture and use adobe bricks as inexpensive construction material at Fort Concho. Hatch, born in New York in 1822, fought in the Mexican War and in the Civil War. As a major with the Fourth United States Cavalry, he ordered the commander of Fort Chadbourne, Capt. George C. Huntt, to move his unit to the site of Fort Concho in 1867. The adobe experiment was judged a failure after Hatch and twenty enlisted men had produced only 10,000 usable bricks by September 2, 1870, but it did earn Hatch the nickname "Dobe," which he bore until his death in 1901.

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