25-50-100 years ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 years ago

Sara Garton
An abandoned mine boiler and hoist (see 1905) was found on Aspen Mountain. They are now located at the Marolt Mining Museum. Aspen Historical Society photo.

Copies of The Aspen Times from 1904 until 1909 are missing from the Colorado Historical Society’s archives. To continue our journalistic history of Aspen, we include excerpts from The Aspen Democrat, the Times’ competitor 100 years ago.Ah, spring, and love was in the air. The paper reported,A romantic marriage may result if the chase for a fair and tender hearted young woman of Babylon, Long Island, who placed a pillow beneath the head of a volunteer soldier returning home from Montauk Point during the Spanish war is successful. Henry C. Lydick of Basalt, Colorado, is the soldier, and he wants to find his kind benefactress. He has written Postmaster Fletcher of Babylon, who has asked friends to search for the fair unknown. The silver boom was over, but abandoned machinery (see photo) was being recycled in the mines still looking for the mother lode. Yesterday considerable machinery owned by the Mollie and A.J. mining companies was sold to aid in the development of West Aspen properties. The two big boilers, which were formerly used on the A.J. were sold to Charlie Burns and will be used on the Burns’ shaft where a fine new pumping plant is being installed. The engine formerly in service on the Mollie Gibson was disposed of to W. Deaner of Leadville, who is to have it removed at once to his property, the Homestake, recently leased by him and which is located on West Aspen mountain. With machinery being purchased and placed in active service, it is time for all to brighten up and look forward to the boom for Aspen. The mine owners all belong to the Booster’s club.

The downvalley migration of citizens and businesses (see photo) is not a recent phenomenon – it was happening 100 years ago! The paper reported,Aspen’s business men are alive and wide awake at all times and many have opened branch stores in the Hot Water town, any of which is a credit to Glenwood and deserving of the patronage of the people – and they get it.SILVER CLOTHING EMPORIUM Perhaps the first Aspen business man to grasp the possible opportunities going begging at Glenwood, was our honored and respected clothier, Mr. B. Silver. … the business has steadily grown until now he enjoys a lucrative trade and is now considered among the leading business men on that resort.HUNN BROTHERSThese enterprising business men have the best meat market in Glenwood, situated on the corner of Ninth and Cooper avenue. It makes you hungry to step into Hunn Bros. meat market and you can’t resist buying one of the nice juicy steaks or some of the fresh vegetables on display. When you go to the Hot Water town, call on the boys. They are both fat and jolly and will give you the glad hand and a drink of the Yampa.

COOPER’S STATIONERY STOREThis is the place to leave your things and make your headquarters while you are in Glenwood for the day and until 9:35 at night when you are supposed to start for home. …Mr. Ed Cooper is there now and he will always make you welcome and sell you all novelties he can from a bear skin to a little seashell that roars or a mounted mosquito that has ceased to buzz.THE CEDAR BROOKGo up Cooper until you see a sign “Cedar Brook” and there you will see the beaming face of our only George Manly. George will grab your flipper and with his countenance wreathed in smiles, will say, “Hello, old man, come in, have a cigar. By gum, it’s good for sore eyes to see you.” After you get into George’s you will feel at home as he has a bunch of Aspen atmosphere floating around, and you will find plenty of amusement. A new Brunswick bowling alley greets your gaze. Of course off comes your coat and you bowl a few! No flim flams in the Cedar Brook and pure Aspen cordiality always on tap. When in Glenwood call on George and you’ll meet all the Aspen fellers that happen to be in the berg.

The Aspen Times noted an anniversary of sorts and lyrically reminisced,Ten years ago, on Memorial day weekend of 1945, an adventurous group of people left a ranch in eastern Colorado bound for the fabled but little known town of Aspen. The point of departure was Perry park, the ranch of the Walter P. Paepckes, situated near Larkspur. The moving spirit for the exploration trip was Eugene Lilly, an old family friend of the Paepckes and a longtime admirer of Aspen and the remote Roaring Fork Valley. It was Lilly who suggested somewhat in the manner of Kipling: “Something lost behind the ranges … that a rare and beautiful town was to be found in a valley, flanked by high mountains, somewhere in the west.”Leaving the eastern slope in two cars, the party made its way to Twin Lakes where it was decided to try to enter Aspen via Independence Pass. This proved fruitless because of heavy drifts of snow near timberline and rather than suffer the fate of the Donner Party, the group pressed on to Aspen via Leadville and Glenwood Springs, arriving at the Jerome Hotel toward evening.In the next two days they visited much of the surrounding country and explored the village long neglected by the decline of silver, depression years, and more lately the Second World War. Touring Aspen with Judge William Shaw, Walter Paepcke began the roughing out of the framework of an idea he has relentlessly pursued in the ensuing ten years.During the decade since that prescient visit, Aspen was becoming gentrified, bit by bit and building by building (see photo).The Jerome is having its face lifted by a complete new paint job. Colors were selected by Mr. Herbert Bayer and Mrs. Walter Paepcke. Dark gray is being used for the walls on the first floor up to the band between the first and second floors and above the band just above the third floor windows. Between the two bands an off-white is being used. The bands are olive green. The top three courses of brick on the window arches of the south (front) and east sides are being painted cerulean blue. This same blue is used on the window caps on the west and north sides. Another sign that Aspen was entering a new era: the formation of the Zoning Committee, employment of outside consultants, and public hearings.The first meeting of Aspen’s newly appointed Zoning Committee was held Tuesday evening in the Council Rooms in the Armory Hall. Mr. Lloyd Hyden, a member of the city planning firm of Trafton Bean & Associates met with the committee to outline in rough draft form the first draft of changes that will amend the present zoning ordinance that was passed in April 1947.Members include Mayor A.E. Robison, Fred Glidden, Fritz Benedict, Mrs. Fred Willoughby and V.E. Ringle. The committee spent the evening considering the probable needs of the community for a business section, tourist zone and residential section in the foreseeable future.

Mr. Hyden took the recommendations back to the company’s headquarters in Boulder where a new map of the city will be made to show the probable trend in business and tourist areas and work up several ideas so that they can be discussed at length by the committee.After the committee feels that they have arrived at a reasonable and logical plan for Aspen, they will schedule an open hearing when the citizens can be informed of all that has happened and protests, suggestions and other ideas can be given to the committee.

This spring should bring a heavy runoff, and valley residents need to be wary near our rivers. Twenty-five years ago Mountain Rescue practiced river recovery. The paper reported,Fishing drowned bodies out of the river is a grim thought. But it’s a task Mountain Rescue teams and sheriff’s deputies face each spring.”Every spring we lose at least one person in the water,” Mountain Rescue president Greg Mace said.To help recover victims of drowning the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Department recently purchased a 40 foot river net.Saturday, members of the sheriff’s department, Mountain Rescue and West Eagle Mountain Rescue gathered at the Slaughterhouse bridge to practice using it [see photo]. “The net is used as a last resort,” Mace explained. “If someone goes in upstream, the net is set up farther downstream, usually anchored to a bridge.””People don’t realize how dangerous the water is,” he warned. “Kayakers we don’t worry about; they know the risk. It’s the person casually playing near the water we’re concerned about, especially, kids.”Rescuers used to use wire fencing to trawl for bodies. But Mace said that method was inefficient because the fencing was difficult to set up in the water.Because of the potential for flooding in area rivers this spring, Mace is especially concerned about drowning.This article falls into “The more things change, the more they stay the same” category.County Commissioners met with District Attorney Chuck Leidner last Thursday in an attempt to resolve what appeared to be irreconcilable differences between the district attorney’s and sheriff’s offices. …[A recent] report said Leidner’s office had failed to establish warm working relationships with the law enforcement in Pitkin County.Leidner blamed that on the sheriff’s office, and said he could not enforce the laws one way in Rio Blanco and Garfield counties and another way in Pitkin County. …”Your attitude has created this problem,” [Commissioner Joe] Edwards said. “Your having to do it my way approach leads to the lack of communication. No one trusts you because they think you’re going to have the DEA investigate them.” …Leidner told commissioners that every other law enforcement agency except the sheriff’s department has an investigative agency he can deal with. In the case of the sheriff’s office, he has to deal with 15 to 17 different deputies “who don’t understand fully the concept of investigation.” …

The commissioners and [Sheriff] Kienast were receptive to a suggestion by Leidner that a deputy be assigned to the district attorney’s office for a couple of weeks at a time to learn more about investigating and case preparation.There seemed to be agreement also on other [report] recommendations – that the district attorney needs a second attorney and a second secretary in the Aspen office. complied by Sara Garton

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