25-50 years ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50 years ago

Sara Garton

In 1955 The Aspen Times published a picture of the old Park tram and reported that Ken Moore of Boulder is remodeling the building into three modern apartments.

The “Around Aspen” column included an item about one of Aspen’s favorite ski school instructors (see photo).Friedl Pfeifer arrived in town Tuesday from Austria and will be here about two weeks. He then goes back to Europe where he will coach the American girls Olympic Team, and plans to be back in Aspen the first part of February. He brings word that Bunny is fine and the children are very happy in their new school.President Eisenhower was recovering from a heart attack he suffered in September 1955 while vacationing in Denver, and Elli Iselin sent him a get-well gift. She received a thank-you letter from the White House, which was reprinted in The Aspen Times:

Dear Mrs. Iselin:You couldn’t have picked anything that would give the President more pleasure than the Swiss fisherman’s knife. He is already looking forward to the day when he can take it on his next fishing trip.Because the doctors are still restricting his activities, the President asked me to express to you his many thanks for your thought of him.With best wishesSincerely, Ann C. WhitmanPersonal Secretary to The President

It was beginning to look a lot like ski season, as “Around Aspen” noted,The Iselins’ shop, Elli of Aspen, will open its doors this Saturday with a fine full stock of winter and skiing merchandise. The recent enlarging of the store and redecorating will add greatly to the pleasure and comfort of the customers.Several carloads of enthusiastic skiers drove up to ski on Independence Pass over the weekend. The group included Junior Ski Coach Gale Spence and his promising racers, besides Bob Craig, Ted Armstrong and others.The Epicure [where the cantina is now located] has recently been given a new elegant dress in preparation for the winter season. A gold ceiling glitters harmoniously with the gray and white of the room.

The paper reported on the progress of the new publicity campaign for Aspen undertaken by a Denver public relations firm, White and White.Mr. White told of the number of press releases to date and his work in improving relations with the Denver dailies. The Post and News are both carrying frequent stories on events and personalities. Four of the major airlines are now carrying Aspen folders in the seat racks …White presented a generally favorable report, but he said that unfavorable publicity on Aspen’s water was detrimental to the whole campaign to get people to come here. White said that the water situation would have to be stabilized and quickly or that publicity would blow up in our faces. He said that the water problem was the number one problem as far as publicity was concerned.Mr. Hendy, president of the Aspen Water Company, said that the Health Department engineer had not come to Aspen to make a study as promised and that study would have to be done before plans could be developed that might satisfy the State Board of Health as a reasonable solution to the improvement of the Aspen water supply.

The Aspen Times of Nov. 6, 1980, was filled with political news, both local and national.Declaring that he is going to “send a message to the drug dealers in Pitkin County that we don’t want them here,” District Attorney Chuck Leidner, returned to office for a four-year term in Tuesday’s election, said he intends to be a little more strict on law enforcement than I have been in the past, especially with heavy dug trafficking that’s going on up there [in Aspen].”And there was a report about the district attorney’s popular newt opponent,Although an unofficial count in one Aspen precinct showed cartoon character Sal A Mander out-polling DA Chuck Leidner by a count of 247 to 91 (with an additional 165 voters declining to vote at all for the office of district attorney), no official count of Mander’s write-in votes seems likely. … [County Clerk Loretta] Banner is apparently heeding a directive reportedly issued by the secretary of state’s office, which stated that any county clerk who counted such unofficial write-in votes would be guilty of malfeasance of office and could be prosecuted.

The paper reported on a political happening at the Hotel Jerome,Political prankster Dick Tuck played part of his mysteriously acquired Watergate tapes in the Hotel Jerome Sunday, but the contents of the tapes were eclipsed by a touch of local press pageantry worthy of Disneyland.It was an elaborate media event dramatized by glaring lights, television crews and camera-clad reporters who separated Tuck from the crowd of about 75 in the hotel lobby.Tuck, political editor for the National Lampoon and part-time Aspen resident, announced on network news Oct. 21 that he had acquired a set of the Watergate tapes himself and would make them available to the press and to his favorite bar in Aspen. The recorded segments played for an Aspen audience included Nixon telling Haldeman the 1972 break-in at the Watergate complex should be covered up.

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