When military families arrived at either fort, they were pleasantly surprised by the size and appearance of their living quarters. The officers' homes at Fort Griffin were huge compared to the enlisted men's quarters.
Unfortunately, the living conditions deteriorated as soon as temperatures rose. Because the army wanted the two forts built as quickly as possible, they used green lumber.
By 1871, at the height of the Indian wars, housing was so scarce at Fort Richardson that junior officers and their families lived in tents.