Custer County, Colorado

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Sierra Journal 4-12-1883 Old Times and Timers – The first permanent settlers who came to what is now Rosita arrived here Nov. 14th 1872. The party consisted of Dick Irwin, James Pringle and W.J. Robinson who pitched their first camp in a little aspen grove, back of where the Pringle cabin now stands on Euclid avenue.

On the day following the district bylaws were adopted and the Hoyt Mining company organized in the same historical aspen grove.

The first house was put up by the aforesaid Hoyt Mining company and consisted of the old cabin that so long stood in the Bull Head corral, but which was torn down three years since.

The next house built and which is the oldest house now standing in Rosita is the present residence of V. B. Hoyt, Esq.

The first mine located in the camp was from the Senator's mine August 28th, 1873, and was hauled in a wagon to Pueblo by Charles Hobson and shipped over the D. & R.G. to Denver to Prof. Schiermer's sampling works and was sold by V.B. Hoyt to Louis Whyte and sent to Swansea, Wales, for treatment. This batch of ore netted about $300 a ton.

The first woman who ever lived here was Mrs. Catherine Hobson, the wife of John Hobson now deceased. She now resides at Savannah, Missouri.

The first child born was of parents named Foss and was christened “Rosita” by the miners. The birth occurred during the fall of '73. Rosita Foss died in Pueblo in '75.

The first marriage celebrated in Rosita was in the summer or fall of '74. The ceremony being performed by the Rev. L.W. Smith, but the records of the matter having been mislaid, we cannot now give the names of the contracting parties.

The first death was that of Charley Boyd, who died November 23rd, of '73, being the first interment in the present cemetery.

The first store was opened in a tent early in the summer of '73, near the present location of the M.E. church, by B.F. Kirkham, now a resident of Kokomo.

The first minister was Rev. John Stokes, a Methodist circuit rider, resident of Oak Grove, this side of Pleasant Valley, who held the first divine service in the summer of '73, in the log store of B.F. Kirkham who had built on Tyndal street.

The first school was taught in the winter of '73 – '74, by Miss Clarinda Swift.

Among the old timers, we mention the following who are still here:
V.B. Hoyt, Esq., is still mining here.
Nick Ma? is an attaché of the Rosita Brewing Co.
Hank Kelley, who belongs to the '73 period lies in town.
Dick Irwin holds to a sublime faith in these mines and lives in town.
George and Frank Woodruff who came in '73 are both married and live in Rosita.
Frank Ruff, who came to the valley in the summer of '73 is still a resident of Wet Mountains.
Charley Rognon lives at Canon City, but is operating some gold claims in eastern Tennessee.
James Pringle is here, but will start on a prospecting trip to the gold fields of Alaska about the first of May.
James A. Gooch and Lem Kyger, of the '73 crop, are citizens of Rosita; Gooch holding the position of postmaster.

There are many others of the later and more prolific periods of '74 and '75 who might not improperly be said to be old timers, but as we would hardly be able to make a complete list of them, we stop with '73.

It may be remarked that there is one noticeable feature with reference to those who leave, i.e., that they come back after being away a few years and drive their stakes anew, and say that after all Rosita is the best camp of the west – while those who stay have almost invariably won the smiles of fortune.

Adversities and dull times have retarded our onward march, but the camp organized on Nov 15th, 1872, had for a foundation the rock of illimitable treasure and while Hoyt, Irwin, Pringle and Robinson in driving their stakes here had the faith of prospectors and the hopes of humanity, they little imagined the royal hoard of treasure that these beautiful hills enclosed. The Humboldt – Pocahontas vein, alone, is backing for a populous mining town and yet this is only an index to the wealth of the mines of Rosita.

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