Thursday, July 22, 2021

Interesting Chronology of Three Newspaper Articles

 September 22, 1910, Routt County Courier.

September 29, 1910, The Weekly Courier



   Colorado Springs, September 23 – Jack Gillespie, a barber of Colorado City, literally snatched two lion cubs from their lair in Crystal park today and now proposes to use them as a decoy to capture the mother.

   Armed with a Bowie knife and two guns, Gillespie crawled into the den of the lions and captured the beasts without being scratched.

   The mother lion, it is supposed, was some distance away, probably feeding. Gillespie has brought the cubs here.  They are about the size of large cats and he proposes to make pets of them.

October 1, 1910, The Indicator



Breaks Into Chicken Coop and Takes Her Babies Back Home

   When Jack Gillespie went with the usual pan of milk this morning to feed the baby mountain lions which he captured Wednesday in a remote corner of Crystal Park, he found the chicken coop where they were kept broken open and the cubs gone.

   Fresh lion tracks bout the coop and in the sands of Bear creek near which his house is located, showed that the mother lion had made two trips during the night and carried away her young as a cat does her kittens.

   Mr. Gillespie thinks that the mother lion tracked him to his home and lay for two days in the brush watching the movement about the house and awaiting her opportunity to steal away the young from captivity.

   Mr. Gillespie deeply regrets the loss of his pets after his perilous adventure in capturing them, but says that after this exhibition of motherly love on the part of the lioness, he will make no further effort to recapture them. – Colorado Springs Telegraph.

Saturday, December 12, 2020

More Auto Road Tour Group Photos

Below are additional Auto Road Tour Group photos. Two of them are a little different than the "normal" group photos taken along the road as it approaches the Upper Park.  One is an actual post card and the other is a rare photo of a tour car in the snow. It appears that there is another car to the left and that both groups are squeezed into one car for the photo. Dated March 15, 1913.

 As always click on the photos to enlarge.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Early Photos of Crystal Park - Before the Auto Road

These photos were recently purchased from a dealer in historical photos and documents. It's unknown if they were taken by a professional photographer or by a participant in a burro trip, but they seem to be the latter, based on size (approx. 3" X 3 3/4").  They are pasted on 4" X 5" heavy cards, with handwritten captions. Circa 1900 to 1905.

This photo shows a burro trip party "going to Crystal Park" as the caption says, most likely on the Pawnee Trail from Manitou.

This photo shows a number of burro trip participants at John Hay's cabin near the current entrance to the Upper Park.  This may be the best photo of Hay's cabin that currently exists. The cabin appears to be in much better condition than in other photos. There is what appears to be a table or work surface built against the wall of the cabin with a framework for a roof or sunshade over it.

The last photo shows a very tall man and a very small (young) burro, with the caption "The long and short of it".  The old toll building and a gatepost of the old gate are visible in the background.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Crystal Park Auto Trip Ticket Office Location

This is an update to a post from February, 2015.  After diligent research the location of the ticket office for the Crystal Park Auto Trip has been determined to be the West corner of the Manitou Ave./Otoe Place intersection.  As seen in the photos below, the building on the East side of Otoe Place is still there and is clearly the same building as in the ca.1910 photo.  Note the slope, decorative brickwork, window and the brick extension at the roof. There is no remnant of the Crystal Park ticket office to be seen, as it appears the topography of that side of Otoe place has been graded down several feet.  This was a mystery that had plagued those interested in Crystal Park history for years.


Monday, June 20, 2016

Burro Trip in 1895

This is a photo taken from a "Magic Lantern" slide of a group of tourists on burros (and a few mules) who had traveled to Crystal Park, presumably from Manitou, on August 14, 1895.  The photo was taken near the present-day lake, looking towards the slope of Sunrise Peak.  John Hay's cabin is in the background.  Some of the large rocks are recognizable today, although the lens causes some distortion of perspective. 
There were a number of livery stables that ran such trips from Manitou to Crystal Park, as well as to the top of Pikes Peak and other destinations.  These continued to operate even after the Crystal Park Auto Road Packard touring car trips began in 1910, maybe as a factor of price...the Auto Road trips were $2.50 and the burro trips $1.00, quite a difference at that time.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Crystal Park Burro Trip

This is a follow up to a post from March, 2012 about burro trips to Crystal Park.  This photo postcard, postmarked August 21, 1915, was recently found online, showing five people on burros with a price board listing the cost of various burro trips.  The trip to Crystal Park cost $1.00.

As always, click on images to enlarge.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Stereoviews of Crystal Park

Below are three stereoview cards of Crystal Park scenes from the late 1800's.  All three are different views taken from the general area where the paved road terminates at the entrance to what we today call the Upper Park.  The first two are courtesy of Miramont Castle.