Turning Back the Pages

30 Years Ago – April 1-1983

  In a very close decision, the Gilpin County RE-1 School Board voted 3-2 to bring a bond election to the voters to build a four-classroom addition, plus minimal library or multi-purpose space, to the new school building on Highway 119. If approved by voters, approximately 3.5 mills will be added to the mill levy for this district, bringing in about $375,000. Board members Michael Hall, Don Olhausen, and Sandra Schmalz voted for the new addition. Kay Lorenz and Jim Peyrouse were opposed.

The first event of the Bacchanalia ’83 Triathlon, the Grape Spitting Contest, was won by Larry Mudd and his partner Tami Kelsey.

Gilpin County School will only be in session four days a week, beginning with the fall semester. The decision to go to a four-day week was made at the March school board meeting and was almost unanimous. Michael Hall was the only School Board member voting against it.

The Gilpin County Planning Commission recommended approval the special use review application of Elk Creek Gold Mining Company, owner Lowell Jarratt. The area around the mine, near American City and the old town of Nugget, is currently snowed-in, but a representative for the mining operation said the road would be restored as soon as possible. Neighbors had complained that the access road to their properties was blocked, covered by piles of dirt from the mining operation.

The County’s Planning Commission recommended approval for a special use review for expansion of the Tremont Bible Camp to include the addition of one building and the upgrading of existing facilities. They further recommended for approval the special use review for the addition of recreational vehicle campground for 20 vehicles at the Blue Spruce Lodge near Rollinsville with the stipulation that some sort of flood warning device be set up a couple of miles upstream. The campground is located in a flood plain, being at the confluence of two streams which drain 65 square miles.

A special meeting of the Black Hawk City Council was called Monday evening to discuss whether the city should amend its proposed amendment to the territorial charter to enable the city to issue industrial revenue bonds. The amendment is currently before the State Legislature. The Council voted unanimously to let the proposed charter amendment stand as it is.

Pvt. Theresa C. Duran, daughter of John J. and Jenny M. Chacon of Pinecliffe, has completed basic training at Fort Dix, NJ.

Peggy Jean “Peg” Brown of Idaho Springs died March 28, 1983, at St. Anthony’s Hospital from a heart attack. She was 57 years old.

“In an effort to disassociate from their past history and somewhat seedy reputation as a dumping ground for dead bodies from Denver, residents of Russell Gulch have unanimously voted to change the name of their city to Russell Heights.” (April Fool’s Spoof Item)

“The Gilpin School Board announced a radical change in policy at the Thursday night meeting. From now on there will be no more executive sessions. Board President Jim Peyrouse said, “We believe the public has a right to know what we are up to at all times. After all, they elected us and we only represent them.” (April Fool’s Spoof Item)

“In an unprecedented move, the Gilpin County Commissioners voted to ban all new septic systems in the County, effective immediately. The Commissioners explained this extraordinary move by saying the septic systems are polluting the groundwater and the County must look to the safety and well-being of its present residents. When asked what the new residents will do without a septic system, the Commissioners said, “Let them go in Denver before they come home.” (April Fool’s Spoof Item)

60 Years Ago – April 3, 1953

Once again it seems we seek the answer: “To be, or not to be,” or more specifically: Are we or are we not? Ghosts, that is! If the town isn’t full of spirits on Saturday night – the visitors are – full of spirits, as it were!

Val’s Kitchen, formerly Earl’s Fountain, adjacent to the Gold Coin Bar, will open next Friday and will serve an Easter dinner of all the delicacies desired.

Someone broke into the Calhoun Mine, Russell Gulch, on Friday night.

One of the most popular citizens of Central City, died Wednesday evening at his home on Eureka Street. Burton Shobert had been in failing health for the past several months and the Grim Reaper exacted his toll at 8:15 o’clock.

With but one round left in the battle – and a dry battle it has been for the most part – the clouds opened up on March 30th. A friendly little drizzle sprinkled the grateful earth throughout Sunday afternoon, and with darkness came the great, soggy snowflakes.

More babies were born in the United States in 1952 than in any previous year in the nation’s history. The total is estimated at 3,875,000, and the year’s birth rate was approximately 25 per 1,000 population.

Joe Larger showed his unique exhibit of hand-forged miniature tools to the children of Black Hawk School last Friday. The time, skill and patience that went into the making of each tiny tool was an impressive lesson to the children.

Across Afghanistan’s southwest frontier with Iran, winds up to 110 miles per hour blow continuously from June to September.

American Legion Auxiliary Cody-Thomas Unit voted to donate $5.00 to the local Red Cross and also to sponsor a Girl Scout group for the County. Lillian Grenfell reported that she has collected a large amount of old nylon stockings, which she will send to a Veteran’s hospital for the rehabilitation program.

Few news stories of our time have been given so lavish a treatment as the final illness and death of Stalin.

Real dignity requires no acting and if you haven’t that kind, any pretense of possessing it merely raises a laugh.

Jasper, a parrot, of Brixton, England, that can imitate seagulls to perfection, tried to land in the harbor like one and had to be rescued by its owner.

90 Years Ago – March 30, 1923

Robert H. Sayre, of Denver, has been named by Governor Sweet to represent the northern mining counties of Colorado on the Metal Mining Fund Board. While Mr. Sayre’s largest holdings are in Gilpin County, he is interested also in Clear Creek properties, primarily the Lake group and in tungsten mines of Boulder County as well as in silver and gold properties at Jimtown and Ward camps, and in extensive placer deposits near Rollinsville. The Sayre holdings in Gilpin County include the Kansas-Buroughs Group, the Columbia Tunnel, the Gibson Group on Quartz Hill, the Concrete on the west extension of the Gunnell Lode, the Pierce and Adaline, the Bates-Hunter, the Perigo, the Alps, the Americus and many others, and valuable claims near Breckenridge, and Dillon in Summit County, at Pitkin camp in Gunnison County and near Aspen in Pitkin County. He was reputed to be the only operator west of the Missouri River that produced barium commercially.

On March 15, Fred Smith, aged 61 years, and his brother, Conrad S. Smith, aged 63 years, went down from the Illinois Mine, in Mammoth Gulch, to Tolland for supplies, and when ready to return hitched up their horse to a sled on which the supplies had been strapped, with blankets and comforters which they were taking to the mine. When they left Tolland the weather was fine, but they had proceeded only a short distance before encountering a mountain blizzard sweeping down from the face of James Peak, carrying with it clouds of snow and bitter cold breezes. The horse was about exhausted when they reached a point about two miles from Tolland, and they unhitched him from the sled, took a blanket each, and continued on, trudging through drifts of snow many feet in depth, and had arrived within half a mile of the tunnel when nature gave out from the strain and they could go no further. Wrapping their blankets around them, both men crawled under the low branches of a pine tree, which were almost even with the snow banks, with the possible intention of resting and to escape the cutting blasts of the wind. They were found there by searching parties ten days later, frozen to death. That location is about four miles west of Apex.

On Monday, the thermometer was four degrees below, at Apex, and on Tuesday, three above, but during the day it was exceedingly warm for March.

Filled milk, defined as “Any milk, cream, or skimmed milk, whether condensed or not, evaporated, powdered, concentrated, dried or desiccated, to which has been added or which has been blended or compounded with any fat or oil rather than milk fat, so that the resulting product is an imitation or semblance of milk, cream or skimmed milk,” has been outlawed by Congress.

Mr. M. J. Riley, superintendent of the Golden Ledge Mining Company, operating to the north and west of this city, contemplates installing a larger plant of machinery, to take the place of the gasoline hoister now being used over the Golden Ledge Mine.

The fireman’s dance on Saturday evening in this city, was a grand success, and one of the best attended given by this organization in year.

S. T. Harris of Russell, was in Nederland and vicinity the first of the week, looking after and feeding the elk. He found one very tame one in a barn.

Every mother knows the baby is worth its weight in gold, and every father learns that is about what it will cost him.

Mr. Hoffman and the Mack Mining Company stockholders came up from Denver by auto Saturday. The drifts in the road to Russell Gulch compelled them to get a team of horses in order to get through.  A crew of men are shoveling out the drifts in the roads so that autos can get through without difficulty.

Joe Casper is hauling ore from the Druid Mine to the cars in Central for shipment to Leadville.

The Snyder brothers of this city hauled an electric-driven hoist, with ore and water buckets, and other machinery, from the depot in this city on Wednesday last to the shaft on the Clara Marie Mine, near the city cemetery, owned by Dan Mundy, who intends starting up that property as soon as he can install the machinery.

Mr. Eugene Perley of the Black Jack Mine in Silver Gulch, below Black Hawk, loaded a car of smelting ore from the Wheeler Mine at the Black Hawk Depot this week for shipment to the Idaho Springs sampling works.

A leader of thought is too often a follower of fancy.

Seven men were arrested in the coal mining towns of Boulder County recently by officials of the sheriff’s office for operating punch boards and slot machines in violation of the law.

There is on exhibition at the First National Bank a piece of ore from a level in the Fairfield Mine, in Russell District, which is worked by the Jupiter-St. Clair Company, which carries values of $1,000 to the ton, nearly all in gold. The streak is three inches in width, showing spar and bright yellow copper-iron, with streaks of tellurium scattered through the mineral.

The speedier you live, the sooner you will slow up.

With but one or two pleasant days during the whole of the month of March, no one in the mountains regrets that the month will soon pass into history.

120 Years Ago – March 31, 1893

  There promises to be quite a rivalry between the merchants of Idaho Springs and Central for the trade of the miners of Yankee Hill the coming season. A petition from the citizens of the former place has been presented the Board of County Commissions of Clear Creek County to establish a county road to Silver City and Yankee Hill.

Steam was raised last week on the new plant of the Rowena Gold Company’s Ivanhoe Mine in Nevada District, and the water will be out of the mine tomorrow. Next week the company will be hoisting ore again.

Mr. Mike Moyle on Wednesday resumed work on the East Centennial Lode over in Chase Gulch, which lies north of the Robert Emmet, and is the easterly extension of the First Centennial. The prospect has been idle during the winter months.

Mr. Ben Kimber is grading off for the reception of four single bumping tables, or ore concentrators at the Meade 40 stamp mill in Black Hawk, which will be placed below the north 20-stamp battery section. Two new single tables have been added to the south 20-stamp battery section. This will add 20 stamps to the present number of stamps running on custom ore in the Quartz Mill city.

The first of April the Malachite Mine, in Jefferson County near Golden, will be started up. In 1885 blue vitrol and acid were made in Golden from ore from this mine. The mine has been idle for eight years. Since closing down the mine, the mine timbers have become blue from oxidization.

The last lot of mill concentrates from the Gold Rock Company’s Springdale Mine over in Russell netted Mr. Lewis $26 per ton.

Parties have placed a windlass on the Bates Lode, west of where Williams & Co. worked some years ago, and just over the brow of the mountain. They will take down a pillar of ground left standing west of the shaft.

Two ranchmen, living in the vicinity of Ralston and Coal Creek Canyons, accidentally found a vein of what seemed to be copper-bearing ore. In order to fully test it they sent a ton of the material gathered along the top of the vein, a few feet below the surface, to one of the Denver smelters and received a check for $76.40 in return. The smelter return on the ton treated showed sixty-two ounces of silver and 35.3 per cent copper.

Two of the soiled doves who reside on Pine Street were arrested on two separate charges each, of having caused breaches of the peace. Their offending against the ordinances of the city were such as to be mulcted in the police court of Central, in the sums of $28.50 and $31.75 each. The erring daughters paid their fines and took their departure consoling themselves with the thought that they must have fun, even if it were expensive to them.

Street Commissioner Kelleher is doing good work in cleaning up and removing the accumulated ice and rubbish on the south side of Eureka and Lawrence Streets. Now, if he will, in connection with the health committee, inspect some of the barns and stables in the city, and have the accumulated manure removed, he will add fresh laurels as an officer. There is one stable that has not been cleaned for so long a time that the owner of a horse kept in it, will soon have to make his entrance and exit through the roof.

The juveniles of Black Hawk met on the ball grounds in that place last Saturday and played several innings, the result of which is the formation of two clubs for the coming season.

Lue Bon, an Austrian employed at the Mary Miller Mine, fell 90 feet through an ore chute to the level above the tunnel, and received injuries that proved fatal a few hours afterward, at 5 o’clock Thursday morning. He was 38 years of age. Interment will be in the Catholic Cemetery.

The west side of the building occupied by Theo. Crook, Black Hawk, is being covered with iron, which will greatly improve its appearance.

Major Hal Sayr came up from Denver Tuesday, returning yesterday. He reports his wife and daughter as nicely located in Baltimore, and that the health of the former is as good as could be expected.

The fate of the freight steamer, the Naronic, has at last been definitely settled, by the finding of a bottle on the ocean near Norfolk, Virginia, containing a letter from John Olson, one of the cattlemen on the steamer, which states that the vessel struck an iceberg, in blinding snowstorm, and after making efforts to save themselves by taking to the boats, they saw no hope, and in all probability were drowned.

Giovania Nasconi, a young man aged 23 years, who was an employee of the Running Lode Mining & Milling Company, was instantly killed last Tuesday night in the west 500-foot level of that mine. At about 10:30 that night he had drilled two holes, one an upright and the other in the breast of the level. While loading the former, the tamping-bar used in seating the explosive caused an explosion, the full force of which struck him on the head, splitting it and almost beheading him, and broke both arms. Interment was made at the cemetery in Silver Plume.

If the young ladies of Black Hawk wish to introduce or hasten the general usage of the crinoline, let them get up a crinoline ball. If it can stand the test of the ballroom, its introduction would be soon.

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