25-50-100 years ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 years ago

Compiled by Janet Urquhart
Aspen Times Weekly
Aspen, CO Colorado

The fate of Aspen’s volunteer firefighting team was in the news almost daily 100 years ago. The team was made up of horses. The Aspen Democrat-Times reported:

The proposition to consolidate the fire and police departments, as advanced by this paper, meets with the utmost approval of our people – with the understanding that the fire team is to be retained.

This will effect a savings of the fire chief’s salary of $100 per month and will not impair the efficiency of either department to any appreciable extent if common sense and a little business sagacity is used in making the change.

This leaves the question open as to the keep of the team, which will certainly [amount] to not more than $20 or $25 a month. If the city cannot afford this, then our people will see to it that the team will be of no expense to the city.

• • • •

The following day, Oct. 1, there was this report:

Last evening Fire Chief Wack was checked out at the station house and is no longer on the city payroll. He will retain his office as fire chief until the expiration of the time for which he was elected.

The station house is now in charge of Marshal Sanders and Captain Sullivan of the police department. It is understood that this arrangement will last but a few days for as soon as the hose carts are repaired, the horses will be taken away.

That the horses will be disposed of is sure, as Mayor Wagner stated this morning several bids had been received, but as to the name of the successful bidder and the amount to be paid for them, he had nothing to say.

It is a strange commentary on common sense and decency that after the business people of the city voluntarily offered to stand the expense of the team, the council should act in such an arbitrary manner.

The team must go!

Mothers were set to march 50 years ago. The Aspen Skiing Corp. was the target of their protest. The Aspen Times reported:

Pickets will march in Aspen again for the first time in half a century next Tuesday, October 4, at 4 p.m.

No labor dispute, the protest march will be staged by local mothers to show the Aspen Skiing Corporation how they feel about newly increased children’s lift rates.

The protest march and mass picketing was announced this week by “Aspen Mothers, Children and Other Residents United Against Excessive Lift Rates,” an organization of mothers formed to persuade the ski corporation to reconsider its rate policy.

Last month the corporation, owner of the lifts on Aspen Mountain, announced an increase in all lift rates including those for local children. New rates for resident children will be $2 a day instead of the 75 cents previously charged.

In a statement to the Press, Mrs. Kingsbury Pitcher, vice chairman of the mothers’ group, stated that “the new rates will keep all but the wealthiest children off the ski slopes and hinder the growth of junior skiing.”

• • • •

A local fisherman was angling for another record 50 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

Trying to surpass his trout-catching record of two years ago, Homer Jaycox of Aspen has caught 1,037 fish from the opening of the current season through Monday, September 26.

As far as is known, the number netted this year by the popular guide, raconteur and former printer tops the efforts by any other angler in the area.

However, it is still well below Jaycox’s record take of 1,259 for the full season of 1958.

• • • •

These days, Pitkin County is at work on oil/gas regulations with the expectation of possible drilling within its boundaries. Drill rigs, however, would be nothing new. The Aspen Times reported:

According to recent reports, there are two oil and gas drilling rigs in operation in the Redstone area of Pitkin County.

Five miles west of Redstone in the Coal Dome area, Watkins Producing Co., Denver, is nearing the 5,000-foot level on a farmout from Union Oil of California.

At the headwaters of North Thompson Creek, Utex Exploration Co. is rigging up for a 6,000-foot test. This activity is on farmout from the California Co.

The planned expansion of the Snowmass Ski Area hit another roadblock 25 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

In a landmark case, the State of Colorado has appealed the Aug. 7 decision of the White River National Forest which approved the Snowmass Ski Area expansion onto Burnt Mountain.

The state’s appeal was brought by the Department of Natural Resources, the Division of Wildlife, and the Department of Highways.

Forest Supervisor Richard Woodrow’s approval in August would allow the expansion of Burnt Mountain on 1,250 acres west of the existing Snowmass Ski Area, which would increase skier capacity by 6,600 with seven new lifts. …

The appeal claims the decision is destructive to elk and deer wildlife, and would have severe impacts on traffic and air pollution.

• • • •

The death of architect Herbert Bayer, designer of the Aspen Institute buildings among other local achievements, made news 25 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

Herbert Bayer, one of the people who brought about Aspen’s change from a silver mining town to a world famous ski resort and cultural center, died Sept. 30 of heart failure at his home in Montecito, near Santa Barbara, Calif. He was 85 years old.

He was the last surviving master of the German Bauhaus School of Art and Design and like other members of the school, Bayer believed that artists should be proficient in both applied arts and fine arts.

Therefore he worked as a painter, architect, sculptor, typographer and artistic consultant to corporations.

Bayer was born in 1900 in Haag, Austria.

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