25-50-100 years ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 years ago

Compiled by Janet Urquhart
Aspen Times Weekly

“Cut it out, old man, cut it out” read the headline in The Aspen Democrat-Times a century ago. The newspaper reported:

Last night about 11 o’clock, the residents near the corner of Monarch and Main streets were disturbed of their peace and quiet by the screams of a woman and the agonizing words: “Oh, don’t choke me, please don’t choke me!”

As near as can be learned, the utterances came from a married woman and the cause was her husband. They were on their way home out on the mesa when the “scrap” occurred.

Just as a tip, the old fellow doing the choking had better look out and cut these sort of doings out, or he may get a dose of the whip wielded by the hands of men who do not believe in physical punishment of women no matter what they are or do.

So cut it out, old man, cut it out.

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A new bridge was under construction a century ago, even though the bid had yet to be awarded. The Aspen Democrat-Times reported:

The county commissioners this morning opened the bids for the construction of a bridge across Crystal River near Sewell station in this county, with cement piers and wings. The contract was awarded T.M. Gibb of Redstone, his bid being the lowest by something over $200.

It seems that the bridge was badly needed by the people at Redstone and Sewell. The season was drawing to a close and the advertising for bids would take up valuable time and the people down the valley could not afford to wait.

It is alleged, under the circumstances, that Hon. J.C. Osgood instructed Supt. T.M. Gibb to begin the construction of the bridge and take his chances on having in the lowest responsible bid. So work was begun and at this time the bridge is about half completed.

Aspen goes to some lengths to foster special events, bringing people and, presumably, a boost in business, to the downtown core. Fifty years ago, though, the town learned it would not be the epicenter of square dancing. The Aspen Times reported:

Although Aspen was selected as the site of the 1962 state square dance festival, the event will not be held here next year, the Aspen Mountain Dancers reported last week.

Scheduled for June, the festival would conflict with the National Square Dance meeting in Florida and an area festival, sponsored by the state organization, in Colorado Springs.

The Colorado Springs program was an added starter on the state program but has taken precedence over the regular festival. It will honor Mrs. Lloyd Shaw, wife of the late Colorado square dance caller and promoter.

As a result, the Aspen bid was withdrawn. However, the state festival may be held in Aspen in 1963.

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A couple of Porsches dominated the return of auto racing in Aspen 50 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

The rebirth of sports car road racing in Aspen last weekend was dominated by two speedy Porsche roadsters, which managed to earn five first-place and three second-place trophies between the two of them.

Overall winner of the two-day racing calendar was C.S. Trosper of Oklahoma City, driving a Porsche Super 90. He won three races, including the 30-lap feature race Sunday, and placed second in one other.

Pushing Trosper in several races and beating him in two was Robert Hagestad, Denver, in a Porsche 1600. He won two races and placed second in two others, including the feature.

A strong contender in all the races he entered was Race Chairman Dr. Robert Barnard, driving a 120 Jag. He was third behind Trosper and Hagestad in three races and second in another.

The two-day series of short races were held on a specially prepared 1/2-mile track at the Aspen Highlands.

A measles outbreak in Aspen was on the wane 25 years ago. The newspaper reported:

By the end of the day on Oct. 4, a few Aspen area residents will breathe sighs of relief. If they have not come down with Rubeola measles by then, chances are the epidemic of 1986 will be over and done with.

According to Dr. Sarah Valway, of the Colorado Department of Health, October 4 will mean the end of the measles incubation period and of a long wait for the handful of people possibly exposed to the “red measles” or hard measles.

Among that handful are three pregnant women, said Valway. Those women had visited the Aspen Valley Hospital during the time a hospital receptionist was thought to be contagious with the measles. Pregnant women may not be immunized against the measles for fear of a reaction that could cause an aborted birth, she said.

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Aspen voters were set to cast ballots on a railroad question 25 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:

Numbered 32, a resolution submitting the railroad ballot question to Aspen voters on November 4 and establishing one voting precinct for the city was adopted by the city council during its regular meeting Monday.

Although the council had previously agreed to ask city voter approval for use of the city-owned Shapery and Rio Grande properties, it had not approved the ballot wording.

Resolution 32 also asked voters to authorize the council to grant the railroad easements over the Rio Grande right-of-way, which may be acquired from Pitkin County.

Among the questions county voters will be asked to approve November 4 is authorization for the Roaring Fork Railroad to use the county right-of-way and to approve an agreement conveying the ROW to the city.

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