1859 – Denver City’s Elephant Corral

Gold-seekers flocked to Denver City by the hundreds—hoosiers, suckers, corn crackers, buckeyes, red-horses, Arabs, and Egyptians—most hoping to get rich and get out. Many greenhorns arrived, ready to exchange their team and wagon for the mining supplies they needed. Freighting, and commercial hauling of supplies, prospered during this era by providing those supplies. Charles Blake and Andrew Williams built Denver City’s Elephant Corral as a trading post aimed at serving both the teamsters and gold-seekers.

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1857 – Lost on the Great Plains

"Coronado, Francisco Vázquez De: Coronado’s Expedition, 1540-42." Kids Encyclopedia.

“Coronado, Francisco Vázquez De: Coronado’s Expedition, 1540-42.” Kids Encyclopedia.

In 1541, Francisco Vasquez de Coronado left Tiguex Pueblo and traveled across the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles into Kansas with the hope of finding riches. Instead he entered a land so vast it both intimidated and repelled him. The immense region appeared a swallowing deprivation and long-term occupancy incomprehensible.  This opinion was reinforced during an incident while visiting the second Querecho village.

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1860 – Wind Wagons Head West

In 1860, with Pike’s Peak gold fever rampant, Samuel Peppard constructed a sailing wagon with the hopes of reaching the Colorado Territory faster than a traditional ox- or mule-pulled wagon. The May 17th, 1860 issue of Independent, a newspaper from Oskaloosa, Kansas, described Peppard’s wagon in the following way. “It was an ordinary light wagon of 350 pounds, 3 x 8 feet x 6 inches deep. over the center of the front axle was a raised mast with a sail 9 x 11 feet. The steering apparatus resembled a boat tiller reversed.”

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1817 – True Politeness, A Hand-book of Etiquette for Ladies

True Politeness IntroductionLadies, the New York publishers, Leavitt and Allen, have just published the book True Politeness, A Hand-Book of Etiquette for Ladies, written by An American Lady. This outstanding 64-page book includes etiquette on salutations, dress, fashion, conversation, visiting, dinner table conversation, and even courtship and marriage. It is a must-have for all American ladies living in proper society.

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1859 – Whiskey Hole for Destitute Prospectors

In July 1859, William Holman, Earl Hamilton, Daniel Pound and a party of prospectors crossed Kenosha Pass into South Park intending to punish Ute Indians for killing 5 prospectors from Gregory Gulch.  On the banks of Tarryall Creek in Deadwood Gulch, the group raised color, with Daniel Pound rumored to have found gold as big as watermelon seeds.  The Tarryall diggings were found, although perhaps not for the first time.

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1859 – Big Phil the Cannibal

Although Alferd Packer is Colorado’s most notorious cannibal, he is not its only human flesh-eater. A mountain man known as Big Phil or Cannibal Phil is said to have frequented Denver City’s saloons accompanied by his huge dog. He is described as “gigantic in stature and repulsive in aspect”, but it is said for a free drink, he would tell stories about devouring his two Indian wives, an Indian guide, and a Frenchman.

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1868 – Judge Lynch – The Musgrove Killing

“I am to be hung to-day on false charges by a mob,” wrote L.H. Musgrove to his brother as he stood on a wagon near a bridge over Cherry Creek. As Denver City vigilantes tied cords around his angles and neck, he wrote a second letter to his wife Mary, saying he was being hanged “because I am acquainted with Ed Franklin.”

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1857 – The Great Western Cook Book Recipes for Half a Calf’s Head and Beef A La Mode

Mrs. A. M. Collins and her publisher, The A. S. Barnes & Company, have graciously allowed the following reprint of her recipes to cook Half a Calf’s Head and Beef A La Mode. These recipes are from her cook book, The Great Western Cook Book or Table Receipts, Adapted to Western Housewifery, published in 1857.

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April 29, 1859 – Pikes Peak Gold Fever

Pikes Peak gold fever, sparked by the reports of the gold found by W.G. and J.O. Russell near Cherry Creek, has swept through the nation.  For all would-be-miner emigrants, a handbook, written by Wm. N. Byers, the Late Government Surveyor, and Jno. H. Kellom, Sup’t of Pub. Instruction of Nebraska, has been published by D. B. Cooke & Co.  The handbook claims to be a reliable resource, describing the country, climate, streams, scenery, etc. and provides many useful facts about the journey West.

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July 29,1858 – First White Woman to Climb Pikes Peak

On July 29th, 1858, Julia Archibald Holmes summited Pikes Peak and gazed out on the Kansas Plains, her view hemmed only by the blue haze of the atmosphere.  She described the beauty she observed as “a wondrous scene extending as far as the eye can reach.”

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