Photos from several sources in new book

       Westside scenes comprise about 10 percent of a new book titled “Historic Photos of Colorado Springs,” author Sharon Swint estimated during her book-signing May 2 at the Old Colorado City History Center.

Sharon Swint with her book, including (bottom) an early, photo of the Garvin cabin.
Westside Pioneer photo (top), courtesy of Sharon Swint (bottom)

       The 206-page book uses 200 photos from a variety of sources, including the Smithsonian, the Denver Public Library and Library of Congress. “There are pictures of us everywhere, amazingly,” said Swint, who has been a volunteer for a number of years with the Old Colorado City Historical Society (OCCHS).
       The hard-cover book was published by the Turner Publishing Company of Nashville, Tenn., which has been organizing the development of similar-type works in various cities around the country. “I found out they were doing this book in Colorado Springs and needed an author,” Swint said.
       Turner made “the initial cut” on the photos, but gave Swint the option of “adding or subtracting” to or from that group based on her knowledge of the area, she explained. This was good, because “you need to be a local person,” she said.
       Swint also researched and wrote the captions (in many cases, certain information came with the photos) and introductions to the four chapters.
       The book covers the time period from 1859, when Colorado City started, up to the 1970s.
       About 30 copies sold at the signing, but some are still available at the History Center, owned and operated by the volunteer OCCHS at 1 S. 24th St. Swint is donating half the proceeds from the book's sales to the OCCHS.
       Westside photos include the Dilts Blacksmith Shop (circa 1900), the second Colorado City city hall on 26th Street (built in 1892, destroyed by fire in 1990), an early view of the Garvin Cabin that's now restored in Bancroft Park and an 1897 gift shop in the Garden of the Gods (before the Perkins family donated it to the city as a park).
       Swint first moved here in 1967 with her husband Dave, a now-retired military officer who was head of the civil engineering faculty at the Air Force Academy. She said she has been volunteering with city historical preservation activities since the 1970s. Although she is originally from Texas, she cited a quote from Colorado Springs founder William Palmer that “it's not where you're born, but where your heart is.”

Westside Pioneer article