On April 27, 1875, General George Crook assumed command of the Department of the Platte. When the headquarters was shifted from downtown Omaha to Fort Omaha (Omaha Barracks) in 1878, Crook first lived in wooden quarters. An Army authorization for the new quarters was approved on June 18, 1878, and this two-story brick structure, Italianate in style, was completed in 1879. The use of the troop labor reduced its cost to $7,716.
In November 1879, General and Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant stayed at the Crook House for three days, and the garrison was invited to a reception. The people of Omaha loaned necessary furnishings because the Crooks' furniture had not yet arrived. Successions of the nation's influential citizens have entertained here. From here, President Rutherford B. Hayes reviewed the fort's troops on Sept. 3, 1880.