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10/24/2013 Peaks of the Past

(Information was gleaned from copies of the Wet Mountain Tribune, all from the fourth week in October.)

100 Years Ago – 1913

Mr. A. E. Palen, a government engineer, who has been looking over the road work being done by the Forest Service in North Hardscrabble canyon, left Tuesday for Leadville. Mr. Palen did considerable surveying in the Hardscrabble canyon in order to determine the cost of cutting down some of the heavy grades on the old road. He expects to return later. Mr. Palen has had experience as an engineer for the War Department on road construction in the Philippines.

The entertainment for the benefit of the Episcopal Church Tuesday evening was a financial and social success. The receipts were about $70. Every number of the program rendered was roundly applauded, all participants acquitting themselves in a creditable manner. The song by the little folks, the singing and buck wing dancing by Mr. Hawes, the mind reading by J.G. Steiner, the Indian club swinging by R. W. Blackett and the little playlet by Mr. Loomis and Mrs. Frank Adams were all well received by the audience, and the singing by Miss LaMont of Denver, with Mrs. McKellar officiating at the piano, was a rare treat to our people and was the delight of all. The program over, the entertainment was concluded by a social hop until midnight.

A daughter was born to the wife of Gus Menzel at the City Hospital last Monday. Mother and babe reportedly getting along nicely.

Wayne Ricker of Rosita was a passenger to Denver on Monday.

 

50 Years Ago – 1963

"Now you be sure to tell everyone down there hello for me," Governor John A. Love told the publisher of the Tribune as he was leaving the Executive Mansion in Denver last Thursday. The local publisher was with a group of 11 state publishers who were invited to Denver by Governor Love "with the idea in mind that an informal talk would be productive for my administration and the state." Governor John Love and First Lady Anne Love have a home in Custer County and both were anxious to know how things were going here.

Horn Creek Ranch has had the best year in its history. There were more than 1,100 guests at the Ranch during this last summer. They came from 12 different states.

The Custer County High School band will attend Band Day festivities at the University of Colorado this Saturday. The band, under the direction of Bill Finch, was one of three bands participating in the Penrose Apple Day parade last Saturday. The CCHS musicians displayed the new banner, made by Mrs. Lois Crow, for the first time. It was carried by Jimmie Schneider, son of Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Schneider, and Delaine Crow, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Crow.

25 Years Ago – 1988

The auction sale of the Conquistador Ski Area here has been postponed to mid-December, according to Walter Intlekofer, branch chief of the Small Business Administration in Washington, D.C. He said the sale, originally scheduled for November, was postponed to allow prospective buyers the opportunity to inspect the 3,000-acre resort, which includes a 36-unit hotel., a 2,000-acre Planned Unit Development, the ski area complex, water rights and other assets. The SBA has owned the property since 1982 and has been advertising its sale in the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and other domestic and foreign publications. Intlekofer did say that it’s unlikely the ski resort will open for the 1988-89 season.

Hollywood has once again come to the Wet Mountain Valley. A Lucky Strike commercial slated for international distribution will be filmed next week on the Robert and Jerome DeGree Ranch south of Westcliffe. A 14-man crew of carpenters, painters, set directors and others has been busy in recent days erecting a set on the property. Robert DeGree said a portion of the ranch is being leased for about two weeks by Enchanted Productions of Santa Fe, N.M. which is overseeing the filming project.

David and Mary Marold’s Sonderegger Maine-Anjou Ranch north of Westcliffe will disperse most of its herd at a sale next Monday in Bennett, Colo. Included in the sale will be 87 lots of fullblood, purebred and percentage cattle, along with championship winning bulls Calberta Chinook and SDR Truman.

10 Years Ago – 2003

The town of Silver Cliff is the recipient of a $37,280 grant from the Colorado of Department of Transportation, with funds earmarked for continued restoration of the Silver Cliff Museum. To date, some $136,000 has been spent to install a new furnace, replace electrical wiring, install insulation and repair the foundation, floors, front and rear facades and make other improvements. Funding has come from the Colorado Historical Society, El Pomar Foundation, the Wet Mountain Valley Community Foundation, and from private donors.

Chuck Steigerwalt of Fairview in eastern Custer County has taken office as Chairman-elect for Action 22, the political organization serving the 22 counties of southeastern Colorado.

Residents are reminded that Daylight Savings Time ends this Sunday, Oct. 26. Clocks need to be turned back one hour.

5 Years Ago – 2008

Memorial services will be held this Saturday in Colorado Springs for Frank Wolking who died at his home north of Westcliffe this past Wednesday following a two year battle with cancer. He was 53. A plumber by trade, Mr. Wolking was best known as the founder of the bluegrass band Sons and Brothers. He performed in the band with his three sons and recently with his brother. Mr. Wolking’s final performances were Oct. 3-5 at the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco, which attracted nearly a half-million fans and featured Emmylou Harris, Ricky Skaggs, Allison Krause and other internationally acclaimed performers.

The C-1 School District has installed a new phone system which will allow the district to blast a brief recorded message to the families of all children attending the school.

Rob McIlwraith of the Letter Drop Inn in Rosita has announced that special activities will take place in November to celebrate the restaurant’s tenth anniversary.

1 Year Ago – 2012

A wildfire tsunami roared through Wetmore and eastern Custer County on Tuesday, destroying at least 14 homes in the Greenwood area and burning nearly 2,000 acres of land. Hundreds of residents were evacuated, though no injuries were reported. Incident command officials on Wednesday said the cause of the fire remains under investigation though it is believed to be human caused. Strong winds Tuesday and Wednesday, with gusts of as much as 80 miles per hour, caused the wildfire to race through dry timber and grasslands, preventing fire crews from gaining an upper hand. As of mid-day Wednesday, there was zero containment of the fire. At least 130 firefighters from 16 local, regional, state and federal agencies were battling the blaze. Sheriff Fred Jobe confirmed reports that 14 homes were completely destroyed in the fire, most not long after the fire was first reported at about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday. Most of those homes were located along the Greenwood Road – County Road 389 – and along County Road 390. All county roads and highways leading into and out of Wetmore were closed Tuesday afternoon and remained closed at presstime on Wednesday. Sheriff Jobe said it would likely be Thursday before the highways are reopened. Approximately 400 residents of Wetmore and the surrounding area were evacuated beginning about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday. The evacuation orders came via reverse 911 calls and by sheriff’s deputies going door to door. A heavy law enforcement presence was stationed throughout the area to prevent evacuees from returning home and to keep an eye out for potential looters and other unwelcome visitors.

 
 
 
 
 
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