Turning Back the Pages

30 years ago – July 14, 1989

Michael Rodgers, age 7, was rescued Saturday morning two hours after he fell into an open mine shaft approximately 100 yards north of the Dry Lakes shooting range. The child apparently suffered only minor injuries when his fall was broken by a ledge some 30 to 35 feet down the shaft. He landed in snow that had piled up on the protruding ledge. Rescuers were uncertain how deep the shaft is, but believe it to be considerably deeper than the ledge that broke the child’s fall.The Longmont boy and his father, James L. Rodgers, 40, were reportedly sightseeing when the father stepped behind a tree for a moment. When he returned, Michael was nowhere to be seen he told Gilpin County Sheriff Deputy Jon Bayne. He heard his screams and cries for help, and discovered him in the mine opening. He tried to climb in after his son, Rodgers reported, but was unable to reach him. Norman Blake and Van Cullar, of the Gilpin County Mine Rescue Team, entered the shaft in a safety cage at 11:10 a.m., resurfacing minutes later with the boy. “He was scared and crying,” Blake said, “but once we started down after him and I told him he was going to be alright, he calmed down.” Cold after spending two hours sitting in snow dressed in lightweight summer clothing, Michael appeared to have only minor abrasions. He was released to his father by the Gilpin County Ambulance crew with the stipulation that he be taken to a hospital for observation.
Did you ever have one of those days when nothing goes right? That’s what happened to the Central City Water Department on the Fourth of July. Actually, the problems started on Monday, July 3, when a bleeder valve on the water distribution line was found open after depleting the Johnson Reservoir to the tune of 100 gallons of water per minute. The Johnson is the smallest of the city’s three “clean well” reservoirs, holding about 10,000 gallons of water. A clean well reservoir holds water that has already been treated for contamination. The problem was discovered around 10 p.m. Saturday night. City Water Supervisor Ted Brott immediately began pumping water in the Johnson at the maximum rate of 200 gallons per minute. He said the water was back online after 30 minutes, though pressure was low. Being the smallest reservoir, the Johnson services only the city shops and eight houses in that vicinity, two of which are unoccupied. The next snafu, however, had more wide ranging effects. The Main Reservoir, which holds half a million gallons of water, has a gauge which measures the water level in the reservoir. It was discovered that the gauge was faulty, registering 200,000 gallons when, in fact, the Main was empty. Brott promptly went to work refilling that reservoir. Homes and businesses fed from the Main were receiving water by the middle of Tuesday morning, albeit at reduced pressure. In the meantime, the Academy Reservoir, which holds approximately a quarter of a million gallons, was depleted due to high demand. The Academy services the Casey, Lawrence Street, the Golden Rose Hotel, and the public restrooms on Main Street. The Academy is filled through a gravity fed pipe directly from the Main Reservoir. When the Main is empty, there is no water flowing in the Academy. Although the Main was promptly filled, as of the Fourth the water feed lines into the Academy consisted of one three-quarter-inch pipe and another 1-inch pipe. Due to the high demand for water (remember those public restrooms!) supply was unable to keep up with demand. Water was being piped out of the Academy faster than it could be pumped in. According to Patsy Ellis at the Golden Rose, the hotel was without water for two periods of four to six hours each, beginning about 8 p.m. Monday and 10 a.m. Tuesday. The hotel was unable to rent rooms on the Fourth of July due to the instability of the water supply. The Gaslight Inn Restaurant on Lawrence Street was also forced to close. The Academy Reservoir was finally filled after the city temporarily closed the public restrooms to reduce water demand. When contacted the following Tuesday, Brott declared the causes of the water problem had been rectified. He stated that there had never been a shortage of raw water, which is collected in the Hole in Ground Reservoir above the city, but that the problem was with the treated water. As of this Tuesday, a new gauge had been installed in the Main and two new 2-inch feed pipes had been installed between the Main and Academy reservoirs to insure a more constant feed.
60 years ago – July 24, 1959
Central City Nuggets:
Across the Crossroads, by A.F. Mayham: The old Philosopher, who at times enjoys a visit with old cronies, reminiscing of the things that used to be, has to a degree acclimated himself to the modern atmosphere of doing business and do others before they do you. He says “show” has usurped the niche that honesty formerly occupied, and intrigue and prevarication is king. During some of the Centennial ceremonies he noticed several instances whereas low-powered brain and high-powered motorcycle were to all appearance buddies: just meant for show. The real show, one worth seeing, was staged down 16th street, Denver, last week when some 500 or more horses clipped along the pavement: one ranch had 280 horses at the feed box. It was a show of horses, devoid of motorcycles and autos, except two or three of the turn of the century vintage. It brought back to the old reminiscer the good old days, but he missed the calliope that used to wind up the old parades. Central City was represented by the surrey with the fringe on top, occupied by jack—the Old Philosopher means drawn by a couple of jackasses; you see his memory isn’t as sharp as he thinks and he often gets things mixed a bit. He likes to relate that years ago when the mining crew up near Russell Gulch was eating lunch, someone came up and stole the boiler while there was a head of 40 pounds of steam on. Possibly Hugh Lawry, Cliff Parsons, and Chas. Thomas may have some recollection of the episode or Mayor Ramstetter might be able to verify the pounds of steam when the boiler was “hooked.”
Mrs. Anna Maring, Higginsville, Mo., Mrs. Dorothy Fitzmorris, Independence, Mo., and Rev. Marie Handly, Honolulu, Hawaii, are the house guests of Mrs. Frank Daugherty. The ladies are cousins.
Married: Miss Joe Anne Williams and Mr. Robert Foster were married Saturday afternoon at 2 o’clock by Father Thayer at the Church of the Ascension in Denver. A reception followed at the Brown Palace Hotel. Both Mr. and Mrs. Foster teach in the Westminster High School. Mrs. Foster is the granddaughter of Mrs. Edith Carter.
Black Hawk Gold Dust:
Miss Fran Olsen is assisting at Hillside House, while the owner, Mrs. Cooper is away for a short while.
Rev. and Mrs. Aldus Kivitt, of Haviland, Kansas, are at their home on Marchant Street. Miss Meria Civet and Miss Esther Rings are presently working at “Ye Olde Fashioned” in Central City.
After a two weeks visit with the Chas. Robins, their daughter, Ida Mae Birtwhistle and family left for home at Stockton, California.
Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Gardner and baby spent last Saturday and Sunday with the Will Grenfells.
Denver roofers were here last Thursday putting on a tar and gravel roof on Jennie Zancanella’s building on Gregory Street.
90 years ago – July 19, 1929
Mrs. Mable Sharpstein of Berkley, California, and Mrs. John Jenkins were up from Denver during the week, visiting old friends.
Dr. William Muchow of Evanston, Ill., president of the Chain O’ Mines Company, spent the fore part of the week here looking after the affairs of the company.
Mrs. Willis Wolfe and Mrs. Everett McCoy and daughter, Miss Louie, and Thomas Stribley came up from Denver Saturday afternoon and spent Sunday with Mrs. Louis Welch, retuning to Denver early Monday evening.
Deputy Game Wardens Harris and Laird arrested three soldiers from Fort Logan on Saturday night, at Lost Lake in Clear Creek County, for fishing at night, and at a hearing held Wednesday before Justice of the Peace E. M. Smith at Idaho Springs, a fine of $25 and costs were assessed against each one of them. The game law plainly says that fishing cannot be carried on between the hours of 8:30 and 4 o’clock at night, and being unseeingly off hours, many take advantage of the opportunity, with a chance of evading the game wardens, but they find out to their sorrow that these gentlemen are always on the alert and lay out on the mountainsides all night in order to arrest offenders in their illegal actions.
How to Make Frozen Cream Mayonnaise, by Nellie Maxwell: Fold one cupful of mayonnaise flavored with lemon juice into a cupful of whipped cream sweetened with one tablespoonful of powdered sugar. Pour into a mold, seal and pack in ice and salt and let set an hour before using.
Died: After an illness of six weeks, William Lobb of Arvada died Wednesday afternoon last week in Mercy Hospital in Denver. Death was caused by a complication of diseases. Mr. Lobb was 57 years old. Mr. Lobb is survived by his widow, Mrs. Kittle Lobb, and by a son, Harold, 16 years old. William Lobb was born in England and when 19 years old came to the United States and located at Central City. He engaged in mining there for three years and then moved to Arvada which has since been the family home. Mr. Lobb was a member of the Arvada Baptist Church.
120 years ago – July 21, 1899
Mr. Frank G. Nagle of Denver was attending to business matter in this city during the week.
Mr. John W. Cairns, who has been operating in Russell Gulch for several months past, made this office a pleasant call on Thursday afternoon. Mr. Cairns and the writer worked in the Black Hawk Daily Journal office in 1872, when that paper was published by George M. Collier. Late that fall he went over into Boulder County and started the Sunshine Courier, which he later sold to Boulder parties. Mr. Cairns thinks there is more money to be made in mining than in the newspaper business, and has chosen the latter.
Messrs. Henry Klein and Phillip Rohling of Black Hawk are visiting relatives in Golden.
Charles H. Karns, Will McCallister, and Harry Willis were made full-fledged knights at a regular meeting of Gilpin Lodge No. 5, Knights of Pythias, held last Tuesday evening.
Miss Mary Leahy, of this city, is assisting at the post office in Black Hawk, owing to the sickness of Mrs. Sam Bostwick, the postmistress.
Frank Mayhew, of Nevadaville, who has been on the sick list for some time, has recovered and is again attending to business.
During the month of July, the production of the Cook Mine on Gregory Mountain of Black Hawk, was 75 tons of smelting ore and 2,750 tons of mill ore, the latter producing 540 tons to tailings, carrying good values.
Born: In Black Hawk, July 14th, 1899, to the wife of Louis Fick, a son.
Born: In Central City July 19th, 1899, to the wife of Thomas Oxnan, a son.
Born: In Russell Gulch, July 19th, 1899, to the wife of Fred Woods, a daughter.
Born: On Smith Hill, July 6th, 1899, to the wife of George F. Rogers, a son.
Married: In Central City, at St. Mary’s Church, Rev. Father Desaulnier officiating, J.W. McArthur and Miss Theresa Floyd, both of this city.
Married: In Trinidad, Colorado, July 18th, 1899, Mr. C.R. Berky, of this city, and Miss Mattie Crough, of Trinidad.
Died: James McNamara, the five and one half year old son of Mr. and Mrs. James McNamara of First High Street in this city, was killed at noon Thursday as the result of attempting to climb upon one of the cars of the Gilpin Tramway line while the train was in motion on its way over Quartz Hill.
151 years ago – July 23, 1869
The spring and summer terms of the public schools closed on Friday with a public examination. Principal H.M. Hale and Miss Nye, in the intermediate department constituting the teacher force. Special mention was made of the daughter of Mr. Elliott, of Chase Gulch, for her excellent showing in the arithmetic class of Professor Hale’s department. Mr. Hale had offered a prize each to the four who should stand best in their classes for attendance, scholarship and deportment, the first prize going to Fred Weston, the second to Sarah Lee, and the third to Alice Lee, and the fourth to Richard Jenkins.
The Little Episcopal Church at Idaho Springs was consecrated on Thursday by Bishop Randall and Rev. Jennings, Byrn and Whitehead.
There were thirteen stamp mills running in Nevada Gulch; three on Quartz Hill; and three in Eureka Gulch, running day and night, crushing ore from the mines of the Nevada District.
Dunn & Company, who were working the Calbourn Mine in Leavenworth Gulch, were getting 10 ounces gold to the cord from their surface ore in the Reed Mill in Russell Gulch.
Rev. A. R. Jennings preached his last sermon at St. Paul’s Church on Sunday, leaving Monday to take another charge in Connecticut.
A distinguished party, composed of Senator B.F. Race and L.A. Root, of Arkansas, and Senator J. Scott and Representative Morrill, of Pennsylvania, chaperoned by Governor McCook, visited this city on Saturday, and on Tuesday Major General Schofield and party visited the mines in this vicinity prior to leaving for a trip through Middle Park.

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