Built in 1962-63 and inspired in design and layout by the historic Bent’s Old Fort in Otero County, The Fort was constructed of adobe bricks using traditional Hispanic methods and materials. As one of few structural core adobe resources in Colorado outside the San Luis Valley, The Fort is exceptional for its adaptation of historic design, its association with William Lumpkins, an architect known internationally for work in adobe and the Pueblo Revival style, and for its use of traditional practices of construction and embellishment.
In the context of regional adobe traditions and of reconstructed adobe buildings both before and after 1963, including the National Park Service reconstruction of Bent’s Old Fort in 1975-76, The Fort played a significant role as a design and construction example of exceptional quality. The building houses the internationally known Fort Restaurant established by Sam and Betty Arnold.
In 2020, an amendment to the National Register nomination increased the listed area to include important site features that contribute to the building’s architectural design and significance. The new boundary includes the natural features that influenced The Fort’s siting and design as well as the onsite source of the soils used to fabricate its adobe bricks.