COBWEB CORNERS: Blazing interest in incinerator topic

By Mel McFarland

       When I wrote about incinerators Feb. 17, it fired some people up! Several told me about another one that is still in plain sight. I had seen it, a nice red brick, but I did not know it was an incinerator! It sits in a spot where unless you walk up to it, you might not know! Located right by the trail that follows 30th Street south from Garden of the Gods Road, this incinerator is the remnant of a school that was the building in School District 35. It served Glen Eyrie and the area north of School District 1 (Colorado City). The building burned down on May 7, 1946. I have learned from some of you, including David McGilchrist at Navigators, about the school. It was an odd place.
       The one-room school had, at most, a dozen children. One of its uses was as a Scout camp. Boys from Colorado City. Colorado Springs and even Manitou would spend a night or two in the area. I have been told that bits of old tiles from the school's roof can still be found there, but no one has explained how the incinerator survived. The trail even jogs around it!
       On the subject of dumps around town, a few people remembered the one in my old neighborhood, the Monroe Street Dump. This is not far from Sondermann Park and the projected route of Centennial Boulevard down to Fontanero Street. I remember it still being in use in the 1960s. Some of the older boys from Pike School would find all sorts of "goodies" just before someone would chase them away!
       My favorite dump was the one with mysterious remains. They looked a lot like the remains of Roman buildings in our history books! Years later I learned it was what was left of the Portland gold mill, owned in part by W.S. Stratton, who built the Short Line Railroad. The railroad brought the Cripple Creek ores down to the mill, which refined them between 1901 and about 1920. The dump is now under the parking lot next to Penrose Stadium.
       Another popular dump was the one on Rattlesnake Hill on Templeton Gap, but that is the other side of town!
       So, I have learned some folks do recognize and remember incinerators. Thank you for passing along the things you remember.