|(Information was gleaned from copies of the Wet Mountain Tribune, all from the second week in November.)
100 Years Ago – 1917
Fire originating from an unknown cause on Sunday last threatened to consume two little houses on Second Street and would have done so but for the quick action of the Westcliffe fire department which quickly put a stream of water on the flames and extinguished them. The house was occupied by J.B. Putnam and Price Fluke who had left the premises earlier. Mr. Putnam says there was no fire in the front room stove and cannot conceive how a fire could have started there. The loss by damage to building and contents is about $100.
The teachers of Custer County met at the Westcliffe schoolhouse last week and organized a Teachers’ Association. Supt. Lloyd E. Wright was elected president of the association, Miss Antoinette Schneider, secretary, and Miss Stella Ryan, treasurer. A committee was appointed to arrange programs and discussions for the next meeting to be held on Dec. 7. All teachers in the county are expected to be present.
The Tomkins Cattle Co., which recently bought the J.M. Ranch near Gardner, on Thursday loaded thirty-five rail cars of the stock, 1,150 head, at this point for shipment to the market in Denver. The company will stock the ranch with their pure-bred Herefords to take the place of the cattle sent out.
Go to the opera house in Silver Cliff on Saturday evening and see “Why Smith Left Home” for yourself. Big dance and supper after the play. Proceeds go to the Silver Cliff school.
Leu Ash, after a visit with relatives in Blizzardeen, left on his return trip to Denver Saturday.
50 Years Ago – 1967
Robert M. Kattnig, son of Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Kattnig, Westcliffe, is co-chairman of the program for the annual Little National Western horse and stock show to be held Nov. 10 and 11 at Colorado State University. Kattnig is a senior majoring in animal production, and is a member of the senior livestock judging team.
Big game hunting season ended in Custer County last Friday with several more kills being reported. Ada Mae Rusher got an extra large buck deer, and Stella Smith killed a 5-point buck deer on her ranch near Rosita. Other deer kills were made by Bill Kidder, David Lange, Harold Vickerman, Marvin Miller, Elmer Miller, Bill McCarty, Art Storms, Lawerence Jones, Bill Armstrong, Chuck Kastendieck, Harold Godbersen, and Marvin Rankin.
A few days ago Pete Smythe was reading part of the Custer County Chamber of Commerce brochure on KOA radio. One of his remarks about the brochure was that whoever wrote it certainly knew how to put words together. Well, Elizabeth (Mrs. Ben) Kettle wrote the narrative. She has outdone herself in a new production, “The House of the Lord,” a history of the Episcopal Church in the Wet Mountain Valley since 1870. The books have been printed and will be on sale Friday morning from Mrs. John W. Loens for $1.25. The books of this limited edition will be numbered and signed by Mrs. Kettle.
25 Years Ago – 1992
On Tuesday and Wednesday, as much as a foot or more of snow fell on the slopes at the Mountain Cliffe Ski Resort, which is planning its season opening on Nov. 25.
The newly reorganized Custer County Adult Ranchers organization will be hosting a wild game potluck dinner at the school on Nov. 19. Upcoming Adult Ranchers educational programs will include bovine brisket and PAP research, water laws and rights, estate planning, range plant identification and other topics.
Six Bobcat football players have been named to the District 4 All-Conference Team. They are Cody Clayton, Mark Wrast, Keith Samples, Eric Dunlap, Michael Kattnig and Michael Engelman.
Custer County’s own skating wonder, Alicia Bacher of Wetmore, will be one of many performers taking part in the upcoming production of “Christmas Around the World” presented by the Pueblo Figure Skating Club.
10 Years Ago – 2007
County voters on Tuesday approved Ballot Issue 1A which will provide a five-mill property tax increase to fund the county’s road and bridge department. The measure is expected to raise $440,000 annually. Voters also approved measure 1B which will establish a two-percent lodging tax, which will be used to promote tourism here.
Although she didn’t start painting until the 1970s when Father Donovan of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church offered painting classes, Jean Rusk said she always wanted to be an artist. Now, some of her paintings will be on display at the Custer County Library. The exhibit will run through the end of the year.
The C-1 Board of Education has learned that it will receive $3.4 million in funding from the state, based on the district’s student head-count of 485 students.
District Judge Charles Barton has reappointed Bob Senderhauf to the Upper Arkansas Water Conservancy District. He was challenged by Westcliffe attorney Paul Snyder. Senderhauf, who has served on the board for the past 24 years, said, “I have done a good job for Custer County and I want to continue to do a good job.”
5 Years Ago – 2012
The county commissioners are changing the way the county airport is being operated. Last week, the commissioners voted to begin the process to change the Airport Authority Board to an Airport Advisory Board. Lynn Attebery and Allen Butler voted for the change; Jim Austin was opposed. The change will allow the commissioners to have more say in the airport operations; Attebery said he has not been happy in the way the airport board has been conducting business.
A number of fundraising dinners are planned in Westcliffe, Wetmore and Florence in coming weeks to aid the victims of the recent Wetmore Fire which burned more than 2,000 acres and destroyed 15 homes.
How is life in New Zealand? For local exchange student Madeleine Woods, it’s an opportunity for which she is grateful. Woods will be attending high school in New Zealand this year through the Rotary International foreign exchange program.
1 Year Ago – 2016
In Tuesday’s election, Republican Donna Hood defeated unaffiliated challenger John Johnston 1,707 to 1,231 in the District 3 county commissioner race. In District 2, fellow Republican Jay Printz was running unopposed, and captured 2,327 votes. County Clerk Kelley Camper said 82 percent of the county’s 3,874 voters cast ballots on Tuesday.
Royalty for the 2017 Westcliffe Stampede was crowned during competition on Sunday. Katlyn Freeburg, 18, was named queen; her court consists of Skyler Rose Smith, 13; Megan Frahm, 16; and Brooke Flynn, 13.
Paul and Nicole Parson have returned from Texas where they attended the annual book fair in Austin. The fair was started by George Bush, and features Texas authors.