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This Week in History for March 29, 2018


1891: Mr. Osgood and other officials of the coal company arrived in Rouse today on their special train for an inspection of the 20 new houses just completed. Fifty more residences are to be built, along with a $1,500 school this summer, as the population continues to grow.

1896: Mayor F.E. Cowing has declined to run for his office again, so the candidates so far announced are J.R. Killian on the non-partisan ticket, J.B. Johnson, tax payers, and Thomas Grantham for the free silver ticket.

1901: One hundred and forty-seven votes were cast for mayor in the town election two years ago and many more are expected this year. Our population has increased by some 200-400 since then, plus this year the ladies will be casting ballots.

1906: August Unfug, who has severed his connection with the Unfug Mercantile Company, will open Unfug Waist and Shirt Company next week in the new Mazzone block.

1911: Mr. and Mrs. Henry Klein entertained at their hotel Thursday with a banquet for the high school boys and girls Basket Ball teams.

1916: Some 400 people attended an organizational meeting for a Walsenburg Chamber of Commerce, including about 100 from La Veta and a great many from Trinidad.

1922: Baseball season opened last Sunday when the Pictou Young Cubs defeated the Boy Scout team from Pictou 16-0 in a seven inning game. Last year’s county champs, the Pictou Terrible Sluggers, will now be called the Toltec Murderous Wrecking Crew.

Baseball team names were colorful in the mining years of Huerfano County. How about the Pictou Terrible Sluggers?  The Toltec Murderous Wrecking Crew? Pictured above: The 1926 Pictou, Cameron and Ideal mines’ baseball team, from Along the Huerfano River by Kay Beth Faris Avery, copyright 2016

1927: The Service Drug Company opened its doors the 19th across from First National Bank.

1932: Twenty-four have enrolled at the Red Cross headquarters for the course in metallurgy and mining. Cost is $1.50 for six lectures.

1937: The fourth consecutive day of snow Sunday did not keep Walsenburg residents away from Easter services.

1943: Wayne Van Shoyck and John Kelt have purchased the Western Auto store on Main Street.

1948: The annual beard growing contest for the Spanish Peaks Fiesta next summer begins today, March 29.

1953: There is a baby boom in Gardner. Mr. and Mrs. Joe Cortez had a baby girl March 21, Mr. and Mrs. Adolph Maes a daughter March 22 and Mr. and Mrs. Dick Waggoner had a son born March 23.

1959: A petition has been submitted to the county commissioners by Gardner area residents requesting a deputy sheriff.

1964: Winners of the Huerfano County spelling contest were Mary Louise Bellotti, 12, St. Mary School, Margie Tomassi, 13, Walsenburg Junior High, and John Huffman, 13, La Veta. They will now go to the regional contest in Denver.

1969: Mrs. Van Lawson and Mrs. Richard Ridge hosted a spring brunch in the Rambler Café to announce the June 7 wedding of Vanda Lee Lawson and Robert Ridge.

1974: Mr. and Mrs. Al George sold their home at 214 West Cedar to Ben Vigil Jr. last August and bought 204 West Cedar from William and John Saleh, and now have sold that to Dr. Salvador Gonzales.

1979: Chosen Queen of the Spring Festival at John Mall High School was Sandy Ugolini, 17, daughter of Mrs. Helen Ugolini

1984: More than 100 Huerfano County cattlemen and guests attended the annual dinner dance Saturday evening in the Marlboro Inn. They elected Larry Mapes president of the Cattlemens Association, John Novak, vice president, Bill Hix, secretary and Dave Kirscht, treasurer.

The Marlboro Inn Motel, on highway 160 west of Walsenburg, pre 1988.

1989: Janet Behringer and Vernie Smallwood will open a new shop, Granny’s Attic, at 618 Main on May 1, offering antiques, gifts and toys.

1994: The State Basketball Champions, the Lady Panthers, and their coach Ray Bustos were treated to a free lunch at the Iron Horse Restaurant. Bustos was named Class 3A Coach of the Year.


La Veta

1877: The past winter in Huerfano county has been remarkably mild, very little snow has fallen and the range between Gardner and La Veta is nearly bare of vegetation due to being overstocked with sheep and cattle and the failure of rain for two years.

1881: People of the Purgatory Valley are trying to have the old wagon road over Cuchara Pass repaired.

1893: Mr. Goemmer has the frame for his new blacksmith shop up.

1898: Zero degrees on Monday morning was a gentle reminder that one bluebird does not make a summer, though if wind is an indication of spring, then spring is here in great and strong shape.

1903: I.R. Voorhees has been working on H.B. Sager’s pumping apparatus and soon Mr. Sager will have complete water service at his ranch home.

1908: Spring has sprung and the fair weather encouraged E.L. Smith to start erecting a new stone building and remodel the old store building he owns up the street, the Hammett and Taylor residences are nearing completion, F.M. Elrod resumed construction of his cement block building, work commenced on Harry Capps’s new stone residence and William Adamson has started on his new double brick house on Francisco.

1914: Mrs. M.M. Springer bought the school building on Field Street from the La Veta Building Association for $550 and will convert it for a dwelling.

1920: The committee in charge of laying out railroad park have an attractive plan with flowers and a lawn at the east end.

1925: The La Veta Orchestra played for a “rube” dance in the Oakview clubhouse Saturday evening and the Bon Ton Syncopaters provided music for a dance in Kincaid Hall. 1931: Lively octogenarians in La Veta include Mr. Vasquez, Mr. and Mrs. William Hamilton, Mrs. Erwin, Mr. Clifford, Mrs. Spielmann, Mrs. Dryden, Mr. Stranger, Mr. Crews, Mr. Rilling and Mr. Crumley.

1936: The Works Progress Administration’s La Veta sewing room has completed 1,194 garments since November 1.

1941: The La Veta schools were closed Tuesday and Wednesday because of the two feet of wet snow blocking the roads.

1947: Warren Gilbert, the youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Gilbert of La Veta, graduated from Colorado A&M in Fort Collins with a degree in civil engineering.

1952: Robert Weir bought the home and ranch property of Warren Farrar adjoining town on the southwest and Alfred Weir has moved into the house west of the Cucharas and will operate the farm and dairy.

1958: William H. Riggins of La Veta married Marjorie M. Wolf, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Wolf of Gardner, in Colorado Springs.

1963: Loren Hector has moved his family to Gunnison where he will be employed with the forest service.

1968: Maurice Heikes, a sophomore at La Veta High School, Friday was named winner of the United Nations tour sponsored by the La Veta Odd Fellows and Rebecca lodges. Runner-up was Dee Disert.

1974: La Veta received rain, snow and wind all the past week. It snowed all day Saturday, but no lives were lost. (?)

1980: There will be a moonlight ski tour and bonfire on old La Veta Pass Sunday evening open to all cross country enthusiasts.

1985: More than 50 people attended the luncheon and style show in the 1899 Inn to raise funds for historic preservation of La Veta’s stone buildings. A representative from the Colorado Historical Society who was supposed to attend was turned back when Highway 160 was closed due to high winds.

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