25-50-100 years ago | AspenTimes.com

25-50-100 years ago

Sara Garton

Three "walking" plows work the fields at a Gerbazdale ranch in 1900. (Courtesy aspen Historical Society)

Microfilm of The Aspen Times 1904-1909 is missing from the Colorado Historical Society’s archives. These 1906 excerpts are from The Aspen Democrat.There were a few stragglers hanging around after the close of the Tri-County Fair. The paper reported,The band of Gypsies left on Sunday night’s [Rio] Grande after a few days in the city taking part in the Tri-County Fair.

Finished with merrymaking at the fair, Aspenites now turned to filling their larders for winter. The paper noted,J.A. Eddy, Dr. Setzler and W. Leatch, who have been enjoying two weeks’ hunt on the White River, returned to the city Sunday morning with plenty of game and report having a fine time.The neighboring ranchmen are busy these days digging potatoes [see photo].The Aspen Democrat’s editor, Charles (Cap) Dailey, was a political animal through and through, and the newspaper was his soapbox at election time in a Republican-governed Aspen and Pitkin County.Today is the day of all days for the Pitkin county Democracy!Today we elect delegates to make up the county convention which convenes next Monday morning at 10 o’clock. …Be Democrats today and vote for the advancement and betterment of the party. Don’t be laggards and after the polls are closed stand around with your hands in your pockets and kick and masticate the muslin by telling what should have been done.But get out today and DO your share toward the purification of politics. Vote your opinion and let the world know that you have an individuality that is fearless and Democratic.The time is now ripe for the people to rule.GET OUT AND RULE!Also a stickler for fair play, Cap gave some ink to the Republicans the following day. By the way, would Republicans draft the same resolution in 2006 as they drafted in 1906? The Republican county convention was assembled in the district courtroom at 10 o’clock yesterday morning and was called to order by George Rohrbough, chairman of the county central committee. …The committee on resolutions reported on order of business and submitted the following resolution:”Resolved, That the Republican party of Pitkin county in convention assembled, loyally endorse the administration of President Roosevelt, both in its policies as to foreign possessions and the administration of national affairs at home.”We pledge our candidates, when elected, to a wise and economical administration of county affairs and a square deal to all the tax payers of the county.” There were two projects the newspaper promoted for years: one, build a road into “Lincoln Gulch” to haul the ore from Hunter [Independence] Pass, and, two, build a railroad to haul the ore from the mines south of Aspen. The paper published an update:A number of representatives of the Colorado Fuel & Iron company arrived in Aspen last Saturday. They have spent two or three days looking over the proposed right of way for a railroad between here and Ashcroft, and also inspected the enormous iron deposits near Ashcroft for a complete report to the company. It is rumored that the report will be favorable for the early completion of the railroad and that the work will begin in earnest at no distant date.This is indeed cheering news. A railroad to Ashcroft will open up a country twenty miles to the south of Aspen, and will make paying propositions of at least twenty known mines, including the Enterprise in Taylor park, the Hubbard and Stewart properties on Italian mountain and the mines at Ashcroft, the Cummings mine in Conundrum as well as causing active operations to be commenced on many claims in Difficult district at Tenderfoot and Conundrum gulch. Smile and push all the time.

The paper reported no way was this popular young Aspenite going to have out-patient care.Bike riding can be dangerous, according to 11-year-old Dave Durrance [see photo], who needed 97 stitches to repair lacerations in his neck and arm after colliding with a barbed wire fence.Riding with his friends on the meadow near the amphitheater, Durrance crashed and fell into the fence Saturday afternoon, Oct. 6. Following the accident he was rushed to Pitkin County Hospital where 76 stitches were put in his neck and 21 in his arm.A favorite of the hospital nurses, smiling patient Durrance was kept in the hospital until Tuesday morning.Aspen skiers received a preseason present from the Ski Corporation, the paper announced,

Ski school and lift rates show little increase for the 1956-57 season, it was revealed last week by the Aspen Ski School and the Aspen Ski Corp.No increase is planned for lift rates, it was announced. Fares on the new Little Nell chairlift have been set at 50c per ride and $3.00 per day.Only two rate increases were cited by the ski school. These include a 50c raise in the 3-day ticket to $14 and a hike in the week rate from $24 to $26.Not to be outdone, the city and county also announced gifts for their citizens.There will be virtually no increase in city or county taxes for next year. The news was revealed at two separate meetings Monday, Oct. 1. Both the County Commissioners and the City Council decided that almost no increases in current mill levies were needed to meet proposed budgets.With a valuation increase of $294,000 during the past year City Council members decided that no tax levy increase would be needed. Present mill levy is 19. New valuation rose to $2,164,550. …Assessed valuation in the county increased $380,970 during the past year. This raised the total evaluation to $6,939,020. Mill levy figures released by the commissioners and council did not reflect school district taxes.The paper suggested a different kind of dryl-and training for the upcoming ski season.It has been announced that a variety of jobs designed to get skiers in trim for winter are opening up in this area.Starting last week, harvesting of the year’s apple crop got underway, and there is a considerable demand for workers in the New Castle-Silt area.In addition, the potato harvest began Sept. 28 with the majority of the crop being ready by Oct. 1.A large number of pickers will be needed in Carbondale.

Think there’s nonstop construction downtown today? The Aspen Times published a page of photographs 25 years ago, titled “Downtown Aspen Changes Again.” Take a look.It wasn’t bears that were Dumpster-diving in 1981, it was raccoons. The paper reported,How do you rescue a raccoon from a Dumpster? Very carefully, says the city-county animal control staff. A few of the masked critters have come into town recently in search of food, and one got stuck in a Dumpster and needed help getting out. Animal control officers warn that raccoons are vicious and should be approached with caution. Keeping trash receptacles covered not only prevents raccoons from getting trapped inside, but also protects the animals from possible poisoning. The paper published regulations for big-game hunting, and before cell phones there was the Buckskin Network for emergencies.

Those planning hikes in the backcountry should run to their nearest store to buy blaze orange vests, because this Saturday [Oct. 10] marks the opening day of big game rifle hunting season [through Nov. 10]. …Black bear season runs concurrently with both the separate and combined deer and elk seasons, as does mountain lion season. …In case of death or serious illness, most Colorado radio stations received in hunting areas will carry emergency notifications.Dubbed the Buckskin Network messages will be relayed as close as possible to 6 a.m., noon and 6 p.m. over radio stations.The Colorado State Patrol in Grand Junction is the central clearing house for all emergency messages.CB radio operators will also handle emergency messages, according to a Colorado Division of Wildlife hunting brochure.

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