About the Branch Davidian Compound in Axtell, Texas
The Branch Davidian Compound was a multi-building compound build by the religious group, the Brand Davidians. The compound was first opened in 1958 and was called the Mount Carmel Compound. The compound started as one building and gradually grew to a massive multi-building complex complete with a swimming pool, a large central building that housed dorms for members, a music room, meeting rooms, a kitchen, dining rooms, and much more.
The Branch Davidian Compound that we all know of and think of when we hear the name Branch Davidian is a large and sprawling compound that is built around a large central building that serves as the epicenter of all the day to day activities of the Branch Davidian religious group that would later be branded a cult. The compound was largely built by followers as it expanded, with very little work being completed by outside contractors or workers.
The compound was not easy to traverse with former members stating that it was large and mazelike and it was geared at facilitating easy community living where the day-to-day goings-on of the members could be easily monitored by the leader, David Koresh. The compound was largely destroyed by a fire at the end of a day's long siege by US Marshalls intent on removing children and illegal firearms from the property after tips came in that the group was stockpiling weapons. Most of the main buildings were destroyed and much of the compound was damaged beyond repair.
The Compound as it stands today is a stark reminder of what happened in 1993 and the lives that were lost during the siege. The compound can still be visited but there is very little left of it. You can still see some foundations and some smaller buildings that escaped destruction.