25-50-100 Years Ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 Years Ago

Courtesy Aspen Historical Society

A couple shacking up in a dry goods box outside of Aspen was apparently scintillating reading a century ago. The Aspen Democrat-Times kept townfolk apprised of the goings-on:

The irrepressible and shimmering Ed Crellen and Lida Falvey have again engaged the attention of our peace officers and courts.

Yesterday evening in Justice Sanders’ court, Crellen was arraigned on preliminary hearing [and] charged with living on and being supported on the earnings of Lida Falvey.

The defendant pleaded “not guilty” and the hearing proceeded with the examination of several witnesses, at the conclusion of which the court found Crellen probably guilty and held him to the October term of the district court in the sum of $250.00. In default of bond, he was committed to the county jail.

Lida Falvey was then arraigned, charged with living in open unlawfulness with Ed Crellen. A plea of “not guilty” was entered and the trial proceeded with. She was found guilty and sentenced to serve 90 days in the county jail at some suitable labor.

This couple’s career in Aspen has been melo-dramatic, spectacular and now, intensely dramatic.

Mining was, and is, dangerous work. A century ago, The Aspen-Democrat Times often reported on the injury or death of miners here and elsewhere. Responding physicians didn’t have it easy, either. On Aug. 17, 1909, the newspaper reported:

Yesterday R.M. Wilbur met with a serious accident at Lenado, while at work at the mouth of the Aspen contact tunnel. A car of ore came out of the tunnel, striking Wilbur on the right arm and shoulder, throwing him some distance into a ditch, where he was shortly rescued by fellow workmen in an unconscious condition.

A messenger was sent into the city to summon Dr. Ridley, who made the trip across the hill on horseback, at night, in a drenching rainstorm.

On arriving at Lenado, Dr. Ridley found Wilbur had sustained a fracture of the shoulder blade and the right shoulder was out of joint. The doctor did all that could be done for the suffering and returned home this morning.

Two men with Aspen connections played a prominent role in the startup of a new ski area 50 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

What promises to be Alaska’s largest ski resort will be under the direction of an Aspen skier and a Denver businessman who is a frequent Aspen visitor.

The resort, now under construction, is Alyeska, near Girdwood, Alaska. The two men are Chuck Hightower, former member of the Aspen Ski School, who will be vice president and manager, and Francois de Gunzburg, whose Owanah Oil Corp. is financing the development.

Hightower, a winter Aspenite for the past eight years, is at present directing the installation of a 1,250-foot Pomalift and a 5,700-foot double chairlift.

In addition, the former Aspenite is also supervising the construction of several trails and a new lodge.

A dental student at Washington University made local news 50 years ago, attempting a feat that still compels climbers – summiting all of Colorado’s fourteeners in record time. The Aspen Times reported:

Forty-six peaks 14,000 foot or over in 45 days was the record boasted by mountain climber Cleveland McCarty as he left Aspen yesterday, August 19.

McCarty is attempting to climb all 54 of Colorado’s 14,000-foot peaks in as many days. On Friday, August 14, he climbed Pyramid Peak. He said that he departed from Aspen at 5:15 a.m. and was back in time for lunch.

On Saturday, August 15, he ascended the Maroon Bells. During his descent he came down the Schindel face, where a mountain climber by that name was killed several years ago.

A clear day Sunday gave Mr. McCarty a 100-mile view from the top of Castle Peak. On this climb, he was accompanied by Aspenite Jack DePagter, who served as his guide.

Monday and Tuesday, Depagter also served as McCarty’s guide for the ascents of Capitol and Snowmass peaks.

A Roaring Fork Transportation Authority bus driver recently made news for flipping off a motorist and swerving toward a bicyclist. Twenty-five years ago, two bus drivers made news for their conduct. The Aspen Times reported:

Two local bus drivers have been suspended from their jobs after one of them tossed a coconut cream pie in the face of a transit authority board member.

Will Stuhr, 33, has been suspended for 60 days for pushing the pie in the face of Roaring Fork Transit Agency board member Dwight Shellman, a former Pitkin County commissioner.

Meanwhile, Thomas Wolters, 30, inevitably will receive a 28-day suspension for “conspiracy to pie” Shellman, RFTA General Manager Greg Fitzpatrick said. Wolters photographed Shellman following the incident.

Both men can appeal their suspensions, but apparently will not. Stuhr has left for St. Louis, Missouri, to visit family and Wolters has taken a leave of absence to travel abroad. Wolters is receiving some vacation pay.

Stuhr told The Aspen Times this week that he’s become somewhat of a local hero. He said the public reaction to his action has been favorable from everyone.

“The drivers are virtually unanimous that at least he deserved it,” Stuhr said.

Stuhr hit Shellman with the pie because he and other bus drivers perceive him as insensitive to driver needs and complaints.

In an annual ritual, locals learned last week what a ski pass will cost them for the coming season. Twenty-five years ago, the local chamber of commerce was boasting a pass deal to be offered to those with a chamber membership. The Aspen Times reported:

The Aspen Resort Association’s annual membership drive, which is under way this week, got a boost Wednesday with the Aspen Skiing Company’s announcement of a favorable host pass deal to ARA members hit winter.

ARA host pass holders this year will get eight free ski days to use at their discretion during January and April instead of last year’s designated free-ski days.

On top of that, ARA members will get two extra free days, Jack Brendlinger, Aspen Skiing Company director of public relations, told an ARA meeting Wednesday morning.

The host pass will again cost $350 this year and a $120 rebate will again be given to members of ARA and the Snowmass Resort Association. SRA members will also get the 10 free ski days.

However, the ski company has raised its validation prices for the upcoming ski season. A full-day validation with host pass at Aspen Mountain will be $14, up from $13, and a half-day validation will be $8, up from $7. A full day with host pass at Snowmass will be $10, up from $9.

– compiled by Janet Urquhart

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