Thursday, March 17, 2011

Fountain History recalled by the 8th Grade Class of 1950

History of Fountain, compiled by the Fountain 8th Grade, 1950
These are excerpts of the 9-page report, copied from the collections of the Pioneer Museum. [with Editor’s comments or corrections in brackets, as this data varies from other stories].  Maps that show these locations can be found among Mrs. Bulkley's maps on the side menu.  
The Ark

The oldest building standing in Fountain is the Ark [on S. Main Street].  M.S. Beach built the second house.  The Ark was built in 1847 [probably 1870s] and was used as a fort [?], inn, stage stop, general store, trading post, and Post Office.  It has a 22-year reputation as a haunted house, and is now an antique store known as the Ark, owned by Mrs. Halcombe.


The building across the street from the Ark, truly the oldest building, was a stagecoach stop.  It caved into Sand Creek.  Amos Terrell built the first house in Fountain in 1860 [early 1860s as he still lived in Iowa in 1860], part grout and part frame.  Mr. Love still owns the Terrell ranch.

The Crab’s lived south of town on what is now the Roy Mundell farm.

The Post Office was established in 1863 in the back of the general store, now the Ark.  It was once in a building where the Agriculture building stands [east of the school] and in the Ames store.  Later it was in Orcutt’s house [W. Ohio], in the back of Martins store [Woodmen Hall],  later in room now occupied by Abeyta’s store [??].  Those serving as Post master have included Henry Hutchin, the father of Mrs. John Wilson, Mr. Al Ames, Grace Hutchin, Loren Gore, Robert E. Love, Vera Chapman (Mrs. Gaut’s sister), Cora Johnson and at present Nellie King.

When Bill Colbert was night marshal he slept in the bank most of the time. Sy Humphrey was next marshal and he walked the street with a 30-30 rifle on his shoulder.  Other night marshals were Mr. Shinner, Mr. Higby Sr., John Skinner and now it is Armstrong. Johnny Lindermood is the officer who was murdered.

One theater was where the pool hall stands.  Various clubs put on plays. There used to be a nice meeting house west of the Catholic Church where the organizations had parties and plays, but now there are no theaters in town. 

In 1948 the city bought a piece of land across from the school which they made into a playground.

A former hotel is the Vernie Swarm residence [Link Hotel at Rack and Illinois].

A.E. Ames came to Fountain in about 1871 and built the house two doors south of the school grounds on Main Street, where he resided until his death in 1903.  He built a store on Main St that faced East, at the corner of the alley just south of the school grounds.  He and son Alvin ran it.  After Mr. Ames’ death, the stock was sold to FE Torbit, who also rented the store for warehouse space for a few years.  In about 1908 Maggie Ames, widow of Alvin, had the store torn down and a 10-room residence built using the lumber.  They lived there until 1910, when they sold the house to the Metcalfes and moved to Pasadena.  James Ames, AE’s oldest son, was a freighter on the West Slope of Colorado.  He disappeared and his bedroll was found with blood on it, and he may have met with foul play. Maggie Ames came to Colorado from Missouri in a covered wagon with parents Mr. and Mrs. James E. Love, and her two older brothers.  She was two years old.  The Reimensniders owned the house in 1950.   

The old Ziser’s drug store is in the Jack Marshall house.

Misc notes:

The feed mill was on Ohio across from the lumber yard.  It may have burned in 1931 and then been rebuilt by Orcutt in 1932; he ground grain into flour.  The business was next owned by Mose, who just sold feed.  It was then owned by Hack Wilson, Scott Ferguson, Conrade, and V.O. Eagle, who is the present owner.

The Chancellors came from Missouri and started the Rocky Mountain Pottery Shop in 1936.

The land on which the Methodist church stands was dedicated on May 21, 1912.  The tabernacle opened on Feb 15, 1915 on the lot on which the Methodist Church was built in 1927 by Rev. Sledge, now of Mississippi.

A Puller beet dump was established here in 1941 and improved in 1942.  It is now operated by T.W. Woods.  In 1922 there was a very old stile beet loading place in Fountain. 

In 1919, an electric plant was planned, and four churches existed in town: the Free Methodist, Methodist, Congregational and Baptist.

The Exchange Grocery was where Mr. Gaunt now had his drug store.                                                               

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