A photographic progression of Fort Arbuckle's (Garvin County, Oklahoma) deterioration shows graphically how important preservation efforts are.
The photo of an intact barrack was taken by Grant Foreman, Oklahoma's lead historian, in 1930. I'm not sure if the second photo is of the same building, but the photographer, John Littleton, demonstrated in 1953 that all that was left of this very important fort were the chimneys. Lastly, the Oklahoma Historical Society documented what was left of a chimney at the fort's site in 1979. (All photos stem from the Oklahoma Historical Society's archive).
Fort Arbuckle's last site was founded by Randolph B. Marcy in 1851 as a Chickasaw Nation garrison. It was ideally situated on a hill at the foot of the Arbuckle mountains, bordered by two creeks, Wildhorse and the aptly-named Garrison creek. The installation is a definitive part of Oklahoma history, as Marcy's establishment of the "Indian Meridian" (98th) became the "initial point" for all of the surveys in Indian Territory. A newspaper article explained that in Oklahoma, "all land titles read east or west of the Indian Meridian."
The fort initially opened closer to today's Paul's Valley, but was removed to a new location further west as the "frontier moved west, too. It closed in 1870 when Fort Sill began guarding the "frontier" instead.