Pueblo County, Colorado
Charles R. Ottaway

Contributed by Jean Griesan.

Charles R. Ottaway (arrived in Colorado in 1860)

Charles R. Ottaway was born in England in 1832. At the age of 6 years he was brought to the U.S. by his parents who settled in Michigan. His educational opportunities were exceedingly meager, but he was ambitious to learn and often, when the day's work was ended, he sat up until late, studying by the light of the fire.

At the age of 22 years he went to Nebraska and engaged in carpentering and such other occupations as promised an honest livelihood and were open to him. In August 1854 he assisted in the erection of the first house built in Omaha. In 1860 he came to Colorado. For 6 years he worked in freighting with mule teams from the Missouri River to Denver. At the same time he served as government wagon master for Colonel Chivington, whose operations against the Indians and Texans are a part of history.

In 1867 he went to Cheyenne, Wyoming, which at that time had but one house. He assisted in the building up of the town and was engaged for one year in carpentering and building.

In the spring of 1868 he went to New Mexico* and for some time worked at freighting from Pueblo to the mining district of New Mexico. Upon removing to the San Luis Valley in 1878, he settled at Del Norte, but he continued freighting and teaming for some time.

In 1878 he went to Alamosa and there followed his trade for some years, after which he turned his attention to the stock and dairy business. He also began to sell ice and about the same time opened a livery stable, which was his principal business, although he took important jobs at freighting.

He also had the contract for carrying the mail from Alamosa to Bowen. At Omaha in 1858, Mr. Ottaway married Elizabeth J., daughter of Colonel Chivington of Indian war fame. They were the parents of seven children: Frank M.; Emma, wife of Senator W. H. Adams; Jennie May, who married Dr. S. S. Craig of Wisconsin; Mrs. E. H. Rushworth, a widow living in Alamosa; Charles S., who makes his home in Canon City and is employed as a guard in the State Penitentiary; Winnie; and George.

There are also four grandchildren: Leonard C. and Ray W. Ottaway; Edward O. Rushworth; and Ridgnel S. Craig.

*New Mexico became in State in 1912.

Extracted from "The Real Pioneers of Colorado," by Maria Davies McGrath, published in 1934 by The Denver Museum, retyped with added notes by Jane P. Ohl, in October 2001.

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