COBWEB CORNERS: Colorado City businesses of 1892
By Mel McFarland
In checking the Old Colorado City directory, I could not find addresses for the old businesses that I wrote about before, but I did find a different source, so today I am going to go through some of the really old businesses that were here in Old Colorado City. I know many of you know about the Colorado Midland, Midland Terminal, Glass Works, the five gold reduction mills and the rock quarries, but today I am going to cover a few other things.
Back in 1892, things were jumping here in Colorado City. The Colorado Midland was in full swing, while the idea of gold mills was still in the future. Cripple Creek was just starting to roar. Now, the town was a bit different then; there was actually quite a bit of open space between us and Colorado Springs. Most of what is along Colorado Avenue between 8th and 21st was not there yet. We had some small businesses like the Acme Medicine Company, Newton Lumber, Van Ness Dye Works, but there were larger ones too, like Colorado City Glass Works, Red Rock Quarries, Ute Pass Paint Company, Snider Stone and Lime and Colorado City Sand and Cement. In addition. there were plenty of saloons, restaurants, grocery stores and hotels. As examples, how about All Right Restaurant, Babb Lunch Counter, Cavner's Saloon, Faulkner's Groceries, Boots and Shoes, Irwin House Hotel, Lilie Meat Market and Sausage Maker, Mather Hotel, Windsor Hotel, and Wing Hah Laundry?
There were several important names in town. One of the important ones that is often forgotten is Jerome B. Wheeler, who had a lot to do with Leadville, Aspen and Manitou. He had not only a hardware store here, but also a bank. Anthony Bott was doing quite a real estate trade, mainly south of the Colorado Midland yards. C. R. Husted was selling a lot of lumber, not only here but in Colorado Springs. His house is well known as a B&B on 30th street. Charles Stockbridge was the mayor and had various interesting business connections.
There are two things I must not overlook. One being our predecessors, the Colorado City News, a weekly paper, the Colorado Chieftain, also weekly, and the Iris, which was daily in 1892. The other one includes Wing Hah, Yee Poy and See Wa, who were some of the Chinese represented in the area. Well, if you found today interesting I may go ahead with another, newer list.