Editor’s note: Copies of The Aspen Times from October 1903 until 1911 are missing from the Colorado Historical Society’s archives and the Pitkin County Library’s microfilm reels. In order to continue our journalistic history of Aspen, we will copy excerpts from The Aspen Democrat, the Times’ competitor newspaper 100 years ago.
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Road trip, circa 1904 …
Prospecting by automobile is the latest novel idea in the Centennial state. Two Colorado mining men, B. F. Kelly and Smith McKay, left Denver recently, in an auto, for a prospecting tour through Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. They carried a regular camping outfit and provisions for the first week out. It was their intention to be gone about six months. Auto touring in the mountains of Colorado is become quite the proper thing, many Denver and Colorado Springs men and women of means having become addicted to the pastime.
Global warming, it seems, was beginning to take hold of Colorado 100 years ago. The Democrat reported,
February 28, 1904, was a record-breaking day for warm weather in Colorado. At 5 o’clock in the afternoon of that day, in Denver, the capital city, the thermometer stood at 72 degrees above zero. Soda fountains were doing a land-office business, and the public parks were visited by thousands of people, both day and evening.
Like true journalists, the staff at the Democrat smelled a rat in the school district and pledged to dig up the truth.
Late last evening the Democrat was informed that Miss Sara B. Berringer, teacher of the fifth grade of the Lincoln School, had tendered her resignation at last night’s school board, and asked to be relieved as soon as possible. The board accepted the resignation.
This is the second teacher to tender her resignation in the last two days, Miss Mahaffy being the first. As both teachers are known to have exceptional ability and willing at all times to do their best for their pupils, and their great interest in the Aspen schools being also a well known fact and which has been appreciated in the past, it is beginning to look as though there is a “nigger” in the woodpile and the Democrat on behalf of education calls on the members of our school board to explain why these teachers resign in the midst of their school work.
That these teachers are resigning proves conclusively that something is wrong and we will endeavor to probe the matter to the bottom and will then hue to the line.
Mel Gibson’s latest movie, “The Passion of the Christ,” is making headlines today, much like “King of Kings” did in 1954. The Times wrote,
Rev. Bronston Greewood, minister of the Community Church, has announced that the famous motion picture “King of Kings” will be shown at the Isis Theater on Monday, April 12th.
The Community Church is sponsoring this famous film and the proceeds will be used in the regular program of the church. …
“The King of Kings” has been shown to millions of people since it was first produced by Cecil B. DeMille at a cost of many thousands of dollars. …
“Unlike most motion pictures, ‘King of Kings’ is a sacred picture to Protestants and Catholics alike and has been seen and appreciated by millions of Christians,” said Rev. Greenwood.
Aspen was changing 50 years ago, with new lodges being constructed on all corners of town. The Times reported in two separate articles,
Ground will be broken this week for the first 12-room unit of the new hotel community that will be built in Hallam Addition west of the Amphitheater and Seminar building and close to the point where Castle Creek and the Roaring Fork River merge. Contractor August Schroder will rush construction so that it may be finished by June 1st or shortly thereafter. When overall plans are completed, the hotel community will have a capacity for over 200 persons with office, dining room, lobby, bar and storage facilities contained in a separate building. Individual units will be either 6 or 12 rooms, and spaced on the tract available so that the utmost privacy and quiet will be obtained and the view of each will be unobstructed. Design of the building was done by Herbert Bayer and Fritz Benedict.
Owner of the new lodge under construction at Main and Center Streets is Hans Cantrup, who is working long hours each day, sunshine or snow, to finish his 12-room lodge by June 1st, the start of the summer season. This lodge contains 12 rooms, each with bath and dressing room. The part now under construction will have 6 rooms on each of two floors with private entrances to each room on the east side. A balcony will furnish access to the second floor. Later plans call for a wing to the east making an L-shaped building with the corner of the lot in an open garden and parking space.
Aspen was going to the dogs, literally, in 1954 …
Sun Valley, Idaho, bows out to Colorado’s Toklat Lodge as the nation’s husky dog sledding center.
Bill Kirkwood and Stuart Mace, Toklat managers, have just returned from the Idaho winter resort where they consummated a deal to buy out the entire stock of husky teams and equipment. The move was made to expand to meet the rapidly growing interest in high mountain dog sledding out of Ashcroft and to meet current orders for fully trained teams.
Colorado is now the only state with large working trail dog teams. The Toklat teams are now the only husky teams available for movie location work anywhere in the country.
Just when you thought it was safe to cross the street in Aspen …
Two horse-drawn carriages were involved in a drag race down Hallam Street March 17 which ended up in a hit and gallop accident after one horse veered off course and slammed its carriage into a parked motor vehicle and then galloped down the street, carriageless.
Aspen Police Chief Rob McClung said the two carriages owned by the Colorado Taxi Co engaged in the impromptu speed contest at about 3 p.m. last Saturday. The two horses, and carriages, according to a witness, were running neck and neck when the one horse got off the beaten track ramming its carriage into the car.
Just recently City Attorney Ron Stock requested the city council dissolve all outdated laws including one which would have applied to this case, making it unlawful to go over six miles per hour while driving a four-legged animal.
We wonder if this Aspen visitor would have approved of the roundabout?
I have been bringing my family to Aspen, both winter and summer, for each of the past 10 years. Because of the intolerable situation that has been created by the traffic light at the intersection of Highway 82 and Cemetery Lane, my most recent visit during the week of March 5, 1979, may be my last.
As my wife commented during our attempt to drive from Snowmass into Aspen the afternoons of March 8 and 9, “We should have spent our vacation in Houston where we could have enjoyed the same kind of traffic jams for a lot less money.” …
I do believe, however, that if this problem is not soon corrected, then “Aspenglow” will quickly fade in the eyes of those many visitors who, like myself, can surely choose to go elsewhere.
A vote about growth in Snowmass? It seems history does repeat itself.
Harry Truscott of Snowmass, an advisor to county commissioners, plans to petition for a county-wide vote to stop what he considers excess growth at Snowmass, if all else fails.
Truscott believes that the trustees of the new town of Snowmass Village have disregarded limitations of the county growth management plan.
“If the village continues its excess growth policy,” Truscott said, “the floodgates may be opened for developers to break the growth management plan limitations in court. If that happens, we’ll al have to step back to get out of the way of growth in all areas, not just Snowmass Village.”
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