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County
Val Verde
Region
Big Bend
Nearby
Parks
Seminole Canyon Texas State Park
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Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site Information:
This 2,172.5 acre park was purchased from private owners in the mid-1970s. It opened to the public in 1980. It is located a short distance from the confluence of the Pecos and Rio Grande Rivers. Seminole Canyon is adorned with some of the most outstanding pictographs (rock paintings) in the world. The pictographs represent many different time periods, including the 4,000 year old pictographs from the Middle Archaic period. Fate Bell Canyon contains some of North America’s oldest Indian pictographs and is one of the oldest cave dwellings in North America. Cave access is by guided tours only. The first known European in the area was Castano de Sosa who traveled through the area in 1590 while on his way from Mexico to the New Mexico state area. The first Americans to arrive in the Lower Pecos were Lt. Nathaniel Michler and his troops who explored the area in 1851. After the Civil War, Lt. Bullis and his Seminole-Negro scouts from Fort Clark arrived in the area and created a shorter route between Fort Clark and Fort Davis by blasting a wagon road into the Pecos Canyon near the Rio Grande River. In 1882, the Southern Pacific Railroad completed their route through the area, connecting El Paso with San Antonio. This Rio Grande Canyon section of the railroad was abandoned two years later when a bridge spanning the Pecos River Canyon was built. This bridge was replaced during World War II. The canyon is named for the U.S. Army’s Seminole-Negro Indian Scouts. These scouts protected the West Texas frontier from Apache and Comanche raids between 1872 and 1914. They were known for their exceptional cunning and toughness. None were killed or wounded in combat, and 4 earned the Metal of Honor. Park habitat consists of a mixture of species from the Edwards Plateau, the Chihuahuan Desert, and the South Texas Plains. A Shaman Indian sculpture is located at the visitor center. Park entrance and camping fees apply. For more park information read the Park Brochure, watch the Park Video,
 
Historic Lost Midden Site at Seminole Canyon State Park:
A fairly recent park discovery is the burned rock midden site located west of the visitor center parking lot. These low, dome shaped or ring shaped mounds of heat fractured rock represent the remains of roasting ovens used by Native Americans to roast desert plants. Also discovered were stone tools, and 4 projectile points, including one dating back 1,600 years, and some dating to the year 800. Also found on the site were several mussel shells of the same type found in Lake Amistad today, and numerous shells of two species of land snails.
 
Fate Bell Canyon Prehistoric Rock Art Seminole Canyon State Park:
Seminole Canyon is adorned with some of the most outstanding pictographs (rock paintings) in the world. The pictographs represent many different time periods, including the 4,000 year old pictographs from the Middle Archaic period. Fate Bell Canyon contains some of North America’s oldest Indian pictographs, and is one of the oldest cave dwellings in North America. Cave access is by guided tours only.
 
Seminole Canyon State Park & Historic Site Directions:
From Comstock, take U.S. 90 West for 9 miles; the park is located just east of the Pecos River Bridge.