Aspen History: Protesters assemble against Humble Oil’s zoning challenge in 1965

Aspen Historical Society
Two lawyers for the Humble Oil Company walk through a group of people protesting, November 1965. (Aspen Historical Society, Aspen Illustrated News Collection)

“When Humble Oil officials arrive at the Court House next Monday morning they will find an assembly of Aspenites protesting their attempts to break the city’s zoning,” noted the Aspen Times on November 12, 1965. “Several civic organizations have announced that they will participate in a demonstration Monday morning before the Court House to show the giant oil company that its fight against local zoning has aroused disapproval. Monday is the day Humble Oil’s civil suit against the City of Aspen comes to trial. In their 30-page complaint Humble lawyers contend that almost every provision of Aspen’s 1956 zoning code, as well as its manner of adoption, is illegal. The suit arose because the Board of Adjustment denied Humble’s request to build a gas station in the west end. Mayor-elect Dr. Robert Barnard stated that the demonstration had his approval and he would personally attend with an appropriate placard expressing his disapproval of Humble.”