25-50-100 years ago
November 3, 2011
A Glenwood Springs robbery made headlines in The Aspen Democrat-Times a century ago. The newspaper reported:GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Late Saturday night, a man knocked at the back door of the Silver Shoe & Clothing company’s store in this city in an attempt to gain admittance.The clerk, who was still in the building, went to the back door in response to the knocking and just as he opened the door, a masked man stuck a gun in his face and ordered him to throw up his hands.Instead of doing as commanded, the clerk made a grab for the gun and received a shot in the arm. The robber made his getaway without securing any booty. The injured man is Ben Sconce.••••A father and son both died from similar circumstances in Carbondale 100 years ago. The Aspen Democrat-Times offered this report:CARBONDALE – David Huff, fifty-one years old and a pioneer in the Carbondale district, dropped dead of heart disease last night when shown the body of his son, Elmer, 35 years old, who had died but a few hours before of heart disease brought on by the exertion of a hunting trip.Mrs. Elmer Huff, who has been critically ill for some time because of the expected arrival of the stork, is not expected to survive the shock of the double tragedy.••••Independence Pass became a state highway 100 years ago, according to The Aspen Democrat-Times. The newspaper published a couple of letters to local representatives from state highway commission member Thos. H. Tully. To H.W. Clark of Aspen, Tully wrote:Dear sir:This commission yesterday declared the Twin Lakes-Aspen road a state highway. This was done by amending the former declared road from Glenwood to Aspen, making it now, Glenwood to Twin Lakes via Aspen and Independence Pass.
Aspen had gas 50 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:Months of intense effort and bitter controversy culminated here Wednesday evening, Nov. 1, with the arrival of natural gas at the borders of Aspen.The event was celebrated by a flame-out ceremony conducted by Earnest C. Porter, chairman of the board of the Rocky Mountain Natural Gas Co., [the] firm responsible for bringing gas to the area.Porter lit the gas at the border station just west of the Castle Creek bridge at the edge of town. The stream of natural gas from the company’s wells 65 miles away burst into an intensely hot flame over six feet high.••••”Cave man hunter” was the headline on an intriguing bit of news in The Aspen Times 50 years ago. The paper reported:An unidentified hunter resorted to cave man tactics to bag his deer in the Woody Creek area north of Aspen.According to Wildlife Conservation Officer Robert Terrell, the hunter killed a two-point buck with a rock.
Election news filled the pages of The Aspen Times 25 years ago. On the outcome of the sheriff’s race, the newspaper offered this report:It would appear that the voters haven given a resounding hand of approval for the oft-controversial policies of Sheriff Dick Kienast by electing the candidate who unqualifyedly aligned himself behind those same policies.Bob Braudis, in his 2,753 to 2,099 victory over Undersheriff Don Davis, won in all but two of the 15 precincts in the county and in the absentee balloting as well.For the sheriff’s candidates, it was virtually a repeat of Braudis’ lead in the Aug. 12 primary, except that in the primary, Davis won a third precinct and came out on top not only in his home turf near Basalt and in Snowmass Village, but in the Cemetery Lane area as well.••••A railroad proposal garnered overwhelming support from voters 25 years ago. The Aspen Times reported:The railroad issue was the most heated of any election debates. Campaigns for and against the Roaring Fork Railroad were zealous and caused a rift in the community as people took sides in what will be an ongoing controversy.Two ballot questions passed by large margins, indicating a general approval by voters of the concept of a railroad serving Aspen and Pitkin County. The specific details of the proposal, however, are the next step in a long process of government review.In the county, where the ballot question asked whether or not voters would give the board of commissioners the power to negotiate the use of the Rio Grande right-of-way and county open space for railroad developers, the message was clear. The measure passed 3,370 (69%) to 1,526 (31%), winning in every district, including absentee voting.In the city, where a separate ballot question asked voters to allow city council to dispose of open space and park space for the railroad tracks and terminal, the vote was equally decisive in favor of the proposal: 847 (65%) to 459 (35%).