Camp Austin

Type: General Entry

Published: 1952

Updated: December 1, 1994

Camp Austin, on the left bank of the Colorado River in Austin in Travis County, became a military depot on November 20, 1848. The first garrison, commanded by J. H. King, was composed of two companies of the First United States Infantry. Temporary buildings made by sinking cedar posts in the ground were weatherboarded and shingled. They were located on a 236-foot square, enclosed with a plain fence. Supplies were brought first from Indianola and later from San Antonio. While Col. William S. Harney was in command at the camp, he hoped to make Austin the military center of the state, but there were probably no troops at the post from 1852 until after the Civil War, when Austin was occupied by the Sixth United States Cavalry.

Arrie Barrett, Federal Military Outposts in Texas, 1846–1861 (M.A. thesis, University of Texas, 1927). Texas Almanac, 1936. Joseph H. and James R. Toulouse, Pioneer Posts of Texas (San Antonio: Naylor, 1936).
Time Periods:
  • Antebellum Texas

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Anonymous, “Camp Austin,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 20, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994