Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Terrellville and the Lincoln Store - circa 1870

Ranch Life and Other Sketches by Michael Hendrick Fitch  1914

A. Jacobs owned a well equipped line of stages which ran from Denver to Pueblo, each stage drawn by four fine horses, with relay stations located every fourteen miles. A stage would start in the morning at a certain hour from each end of the line and make the distance, 120 miles, by a certain hour in the evening, the fare $20.00 each way. The route from Denver proceeded via Cherry Creek to Franktown (named after Frank M. Gardner, the owner), over the divide about four miles east of Palmer Lake and thence into old Colorado City, thence down the Fountain river to Pueblo.

The American's destination was the ranch on the little Fountain, known
formerly as the Geiser ranch, three and one-half miles west of the present town of Fountain City. This latter place was then known as Terrellville, there being merely a house and a grout store building. Amos Terrell was the pioneer living in the house. In going from Terrellville to the Geiser ranch the road led over a bluff and high mesa then dropped down into the valley of the Little Fountain. Here a wide bottom very level and in the midst of it the ranch house, stables, corrals and a large meadow of natural blue stem grass greeted the eye. This meadow produced a great quantity of fine hay perhaps a hundred tons each season. Outside the meadow was merely dry prairie. Harvey Ring managed the ranch. He lived royally, drove a fine team of white trotters and entertained like a true Colorado ranchman. The American came here as his guest until he could locate his family which was then in the East. Staying there two or three weeks he finally located on a ranch on the Arkansas River three miles west of Pueblo.

At the ranch on the Little Fountain the Cheyenne Mountains were several miles to the north, yet, on account of the very clear atmosphere, they appeared to be very near. Pike's Peak looked down in magnificent majesty, crowned with his nimbus of snow. One's appetite grows phenomenally in such an environment, but the table, set with fine home made bread, butter, mutton and ranch vegetables fully satisfied it. Drives to the neighboring ranches revealed a population, though sparse, yet contended, happy and prosperous. Every one had plenty. Stock-raising was the principal occupation. There were some fine farms along the main stream of the Fountain. At the junction of the Little Fountain and the main river, Woodbury & Lincoln had a store and possessed fine meadows. Above these, all the way to Colorado City, were farms and meadows. From there all the way south to Pueblo a great deal of farming was done, corn seeming to be the principal crop. Dr. Dickinson, Mr. John Irvine, Mr. Robinson, Wm. H. Young, Claus Wildeboor, Mr. Sutherland and Matthew Steele are those now remembered as having farms some of them being quite extensive.

No comments:

Post a Comment