"Forts" Defined

In general the term "fort" was applied to relatively permanent installations with fortified structures. Although typically thought of as military facilities, the term was also used to describe stockades, blockhouses and trading posts that were built to be readily defensible by the inhabitants.

The term "cantonment" was used for more temporary facilities that were usually the predecessor of a fort.

A "post" was the term applied to a short-term installation. Posts were typically constructed to protect a particular spot, such as a stage stop, telegraph station or railroad junction.

"Camps" ranged in size and permanence from semi-permanent forts, to temporary stopping points for troops enroute to another location.

The term "barracks" applied to installations with only one or a few structures. Barracks were used solely to house troops, which could then be readily deployed to different areas as needed.

Idaho's outposts ran the full range of facilities, and included the following: