While most of the later western forts did not have palisaded walls, Fort Laramie did because they needed to store and protect the trade goods and hides. “Inside of the Fort there is a spacious area,” Miller wrote, “surrounded by small cabins built of large logs. The roofs of these cabins reach within three feet of the tops of the palisades, against which they abut. The Indians encamp in great numbers around here several times in the year, bringing skins to be exchanged for dry goods, hardware, tobacco, and other articles.” (Bell, 1973, p. 116)
“There was a cannon or two sleeping in the towers over the two main entrances,” Miller explained euphemistically, “the Indians having an aversion to their being wakened, entertaining a superstitious reverence for them. They are intended to keep the peace.” (Warner, 1979, p. 105)
Miller made this more finished version of the interior of Fort Laramie in 1858 as a part of the William T. Walters commission. He drew the figures more precisely and included more individuals in the quadrangle, but perhaps the easiest distinguishing mark between the images is the lack of strands of straw or grass hanging from the overhead planking in this version.
The artist; William T. Walters, Baltimore, MD; present owner by gift