Arizona became a United States Territory on February 24, 1863. Fort Whipple, near the future town of Prescott, became the first territorial capital. In October, 1870, commanding officer of the new Arizona Territory, brevetted Major General George S. Stoneman, was exploring an established Native American trail which potentially would serve as a shortcut to Fort Whipple, from Camp McDowell (later Fort McDowell). Along this ancient trail, later called the “the Military Road,” the Army found a lush, riparian area bordering a flowing creek with adjacent bubbling springs. The welcomed creek, was designated “Cave Creek” by the Cavalry because of a sizable, eroded cave found along the bank.