Featuring narration and a music score by Michael Martin Murphey, Forts of the Frontier West is an hour-and-forty-minute video journey across the American West of the nineteenth Century. The opening of the West is the most colorful and romanticized period in American history, and the forts of the western frontier were silent witnesses to this dramatic story. Dr. Harry Frank of The University of Michigan provided photographs, research, editing and scripting for this joint project with Murphey Western Institute.
From the Northern Plains to the Southwest, from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean, on the Santa Fe Trail and the Oregon Trail, they were forerunners of settlement, bastions of refuge, centers of trade, and outposts of diplomatic and martial relations with indigenous peoples and foreign colonial powers. And, the crumbling walls of these prairie strongholds are no longer silent.