Built to protect the Chickasaw people from attack by the Plains Indians

Fort Arbuckle was built in 1851 on Wild Horse Creek, northwest of Fort Washita. Plains tribes continued to be a threat to the Chickasaws and Choctaws. The fort was built to protect the tribes and to stop raids on trains headed west to California during the California Gold Rush.

Shortly after the Civil War broke out, the major in charge of the fort departed. Confederate troops occupied Fort Arbuckle for a brief period of time, and then the fort was abandoned completely by 1870. Despite the attempts at providing security, the tribe's transition to Chickasaw lands took approximately fifteen years.