Fort Rice was built quickly of cottonwood logs harvested from the banks of the Missouri River. The logs were not properly dried and during the winter, cold wind blew through the cracks. The post was re-built in 1868. Though the officers' wives complained that their quarters were cold and drafty, the new post was fairly modern in construction. Fort Rice was built very quickly in the summer of 1864. The cottonwood logs were green and cracked during the winter. None of the buildings had frost proof cellars, so fresh vegetables, such as potatoes, could not be kept fresh without freezing. Poor living conditions and lack of vegetables in their diets led to a high rate of disease and death. Fort Rice was rebuilt in 1868.