Huerfano County, Colorado
News Of The Day

Contributed by Louise Adams, Jean Griesan and Karen Mitchell.
NOTICE All data and photos on this website are Copyrighted by Karen Mitchell. Duplication of this data or photos is strictly forbidden without legal written permission by the Copyright holder.

1862 - 1878

No Dates

No date – Jury Finds Ward Not Guilty Of Harris Murder – James Ward was acquitted of a charge of murder by the district court jury of less than an hour’s deliberation yesterday evening. The prosecution and defense had both presented their side of the case and all arguments to the jury had been completed by 9:30, and before 10 o’clock word was sent to the court that the jury was ready to report. The verdict returned was “Not guilty”. Ward was charged with the murder of Harry Harris on June 6. Harris was shot, allegedly by Ward, in a shack just off Main street after a party of colored people had spent the evening socially together.

No date Navalesi Studio, Walsenburg, CO.

No newspaper name or date ANNOUNCEMENT Las Lunas Inn is now open for business serving family style meals and short orders.

No newspaper name or date CANARY CAFÉ 123 West 7th Street Walsenburg's Newest and Cleanest Café

No newspaper name or date CHIEFTAIN AND STAR JOURNAL Mrs. N. Watts 206 Pinion phone 567

No newspaper name or date COMMERCIAL PRINTING Huerfano County News 118 East Fifth

No newspaper name or date Ellis Parr was the winner of the cake that was given as door prize Monday night at the Diamond Exchange.

No newspaper name or date FAREWELL PARTY FOR DEPARTING GUESTS A farewell party was given at Marck's Hall last Thursday honoring Mrs. Evan Sanchez and Mrs. Lee Martinez, who are leaving for their home in Chicago after visiting relatives and friends the past month. The evening was spent in games and dancing, and at midnight delicious refreshments were served. Those present were Messrs and Mesdames Ben Archuleta, Zig Crump, T.G. Jaramillo, Ishamiel Gonzales, Roger Martinez, Toby Sandoval, Damacio Vigil Jr., Oras Vallejos, Candelario Medina, the Misses Ruby Garcia, Dora Garcia, Nora Gutierez, Mary Espinosa, Julia Jaramillo, Minnie Martinez, Estelle Trujillo, Rachel Martinez, Rebecca Maes, Evelyn Maes, Benedicta Salazar, Mary Archuleta, Matty Espinosa, Annie Trujillo, Cora Sanchez, Estella Gonzales, Lucinda Sanchez, and Messrs. John Espinosa, Ray D. Aragon, Max Osckle, Dutch Medina, Ben Vallejos, Jack Vallejos, Santos Sanchez, Virgil Maes, Anthony Valdez, Fernando Hurtado, Elfonso Gonzales, Theodor Martinez, Valta

No newspaper name or date FOR COUNTY SUPERINTENDANT OF SCHOOLS Amanda Simpson, Republican Candidate Frances Nelson, Democratic Candidate (Pictures of both)

No newspaper name or date GENERAL CONTRACTING Painting, calsomining, Sidewalk Work O.L. Bradford phone 413J, 223 E. Elm

No newspaper name or date Give your old car the pep of a new one by changing to Conoco Bronze Gas. Instant starting, lightening pick up.. The Most Modern Station in the City VALENCIA Service Staion

No newspaper name or date MINES WORKING TODAY Big; Gordon..yes; Alamo No. 2.. yes;;; Calumet No. 1..yes; Pryor..yes; Sunnyside No; Sunnyside No.; Toltec..Loading empties; Morning;; :;

No newspaper name or date MISCELLANEOUS SHOWER FOR MRS. JAMES CRICHTON Mrs. James Crichton, nee Esther Bivens, was honored at a miscellaneous shower given at the home of her mother, Mrs. Sam Workman, in Walsen. Mrs. D.H. Muir and Mrs. Jack Bortman were hostesses. (Rest torn off).

No newspaper name or date Mr. and Mrs. Frank Spagnola are the proud parents of a baby boy born at their home Sunday morning.

No newspaper name or date PAINTING, PAPER HANGING, CALCIMINING John Trujillo phone 618W

No newspaper name or date REPAIR WORK PIPE FITTING, STOVE CONNECTIONS Art Daugherty 203 W. First, Phone 629W

No newspaper name or date REV. LICIOTTI TO TAKE VACATION. Rev. J.B. Liciotti pastor of St. Mary's Parish, will take a vacation. He stated that he was advised to leave for a few months by his physician, and that he had received permission to take such a step from Bishp Urban J. Vehr. Rev. H. Ernst will be in charge of the Parish during his absence. On oposite side Number 655 Published by John Kmetz

No newspaper name or date SPECIALIZED CAR GREASING Carnes Conoco Station phone 681, 101 Main

No newspaper name or date STANDARD SERVICE STATION Corner Main and Kansas Wm. Metherell, Lessee Unknown date Electric Studio, Walsenburg, Co.

No newspaper name or date SURPRISE PARTY FOR MRS. FERRES A surprise party was given last week by Mr. and Mrs. Joe Costello in honor of Mrs. J.C. Ferres, at her home on East Ninth Street. The evening was spent in playing games and in dancing after which refreshments were served at a late hour. Those present were Messrs August Ottati Jr., Rolie Vigil, and Donald Martinez; Misses Lupe, Mattie, and Nieves Espinoza, Virgina Cordova, Annie Quintana, Martha Aragon, Anita Ottati, Amelia Barron and Dollie Romano; Messrs. and Mesdames F.S. Espinoza, Ruben Martinez, Aragon, and Joe Costello.

No newspaper name or date TABLE QUEEN BAKERY INSTALLS NEW BREAD SLICER. Joseph of the Table Queen Bakery announced yesterday that he had installed a new bread slicer. This new slicer, Mr Joseph states, slices his bread just a little thicker, which will make the bread a little more desirable for making toast, especially, as well as for general use.

No newspaper name or date UNDERGOES SURGERY Harold Hahn of La Veta underwent an appendicitis operation at the Lamme hospital this morning.

No newspaper name or date YOUNG COUPLE MARRIED Lloyd Gayhart and Ruby Garcia, well known young couple in Walsenburg, were married Wednesday by Justice of the Peace Luz Gonzales. They will make their home in Walsenburg.


1862 Apr. 22: The County commissioners found taxable properly assessed in Huerfano County to be $88,849.50. The tax was set at eight mills - two for the territory of Colorado, five for the county and one for schools. County Record #1

1862 June Walsenburg: William R. Walker was appointed justice of the peace by the county commissioners.


1866 August Walsenburg: John Berard was elected county sheriff and John H. Brown county clerk and recorder.


Colorado Weekly Chieftain, June 18, 1868 D. J. Hayden & Co., formerly merchants of Pueblo, advertise this week the Tabeguache Mills on the Upper Huerfano.  These mills are now in fine condition and turn out the best flour.   

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, June 18, 1868 HORSE THIEVING. - Mr. Wm. Chapman of Tabeguache Mills (on the Upper Huerfano) informs us that on the night of the 9th inst., two horses were stolen from Mr. A. T. Seabring, of Badito.  He tracked them to the head of the canon on the Purgatoire, where the thieves had fallen in company with about twenty others.  Mr. S. was warned that the rogues were well armed and determined to defend themselves against any and all persons, and that it would be fatal to him and the man accompanying him should he overtake them.  The pursuit was abandoned in consequence.  We hope the time is not far distant when these pests to society shall be exterminated or at least when a man may with some degree of safety to his life pursue a thief.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, June 25, 1868 Col. Wm. Craig, of the Huerfano, started on Monday last to New York to attend the National Democratic Convention.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, June 25, 1868 Col. John M. Francisco of the Cuchara, was in town during the week, and also D. J. Hayden, Esq., of the Huerfano.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, June 25, 1868 "IN TIME OF PEACE PREPARE FOR WAR." - Mr. A. T. Seibering, of Badito was in town last Monday and bought a good supply of ammunition to defend his ranch from Indians, in case of an outbreak by the Utes.  All other ranchmen should do the same.  "It is too late to pray when the devil comes."  It is also too late to lay in means of defense after the Indians have come.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 2, 1868 A telegraph office will soon be opened at the Doyle ranch, in this county, for the accommodation of the Huerfano people.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 2, 1868 The Huerfano County Republican Convention instructs its delegates to the Territorial Republican Convention to vote for Hon. A. A. Bradford, of this county, for candidate for delegate to Congress.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 9, 1868 Hon. R. B. Willis, of the Cuchara, has been in town during the past week.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 9, 1868 Wm. Chapman, of the firm of D. J. Hayden & Co., of the Tabeguache Mills, on the Upper Huerfano, has sent us a sack of excellent flour, manufactured at their mills.  We have no hesitation in pronouncing their flour fully equal in quality to the very best made in the Territory.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 23, 1868  Hon. B. B. Field, of the Huerfano, was in town yesterday.  

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 23, 1868   L. R. Stemm, Esq., of the Huerfano, gave the CHIEFTAIN office a call on Tuesday last.  

Colorado Weekly Chieftains, July 30, 1868 and August 6, 1868  Huerfano county, although of considerable importance as an agricultural district, contains no towns.  Some of the large ranches supply their laborers with everything necessary for their sustenance, but the county has no commercial centre or trading point worthy of mention.            In giving brief mention to a few of the most prominent points in Southern Colorado, we consumed much more space than we anticipated.  We trust, however, that we have been enabled to convey to strangers, who may have read our article, a just idea of the nature and extent of the resources of a tract of country, containing many and varied resources, and just now coming into public notice.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 30, 1868   Our correspondent, Amigo, just returned from the Huerfano, says that the crops all promise remarkably well, and that the unanimous voice of the people there is, that the "CHIEFTAIN" is the best paper published in the Territory.  Everybody seems to be more than satisfied.  Non-subscribers, please take notice.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, July 30, 1868 Messrs. D. J. Hayden & Co., at their Tabeguache Mills, on the upper Huerfano, are driving a lively business, making a quality of flour which cannot be excelled in the Territory.  

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, August 13, 1868 Grasshoppers have appeared in great numbers near the Rock Canon bridge, and on the Huerfano.  They have come too late to do any material injury to the wheat crops, but by delaying their visit, may damage the growing corn.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, September 24, 1868 Who has opened a new ranch in Huerfano this year? - News.    Jesus Maria Juan de Dios Romulo Apodaca Cristiano Cervasio Santiago Cabeza de Baca and Reinaldo Teofilo Sigismundo Cieofas Jose Borrego have both opened ranches in Huerfano, within the last few months.  We charge the News nothing for our civil reply to its brusque question.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, October 1, 1868 Maj. R. B. Bradford, an old and well known citizen of Colorado, who lives at Bradford, was wounded a few days since near Denver, in a fracas with a man named Earle.  

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, October 15, 1868 A new post-office has been established on the Cucharas, H. W. Jones postmaster.    

  Colorado Weekly Chieftain, October 29, 1868 The town is full of strangers and gentlemen from abroad in attendance on the District County now in session.  Among the arrivals we notice Judge Baird, Mr. Boyles, Mr. Thompson, Mr. W. A. Bransford, from Trinidad, Capt. Hendren, from Huerfano and Col. John M. Francisco, from the Cucharas.

1868 October 29: Colorado Daily Chieftain DIED: Near Ft. Union Crossing, Huerfano County on the 22nd, Miss Kittie, daughter of John W. and Hettie Brown, aged 13 years. Colorado Daily Chieftain

Colorado Weekly Chieftain, October 29, 1868 HORSE THIEVES ARRESTED. - We learn from a gentleman who lives in Huerfano County, the particulars in regard to the arrest of three persons for horse stealing near Badito, in that county, on the 20th of the present month.  Suspicious circumstances attracted the attention of some of the community to the movements of one man, who was taken on suspicion.  He was persuaded to make a clean breast of it, and revealed the existence of a band of horse thieves, of whom he confessed himself to be one.  With him as a guide, the citizens found two more men in a retired spot, who had in their possession seven stolen horses.  The stolen property is now in the possession of the citizens of Badito, and the thieves are in custody at the same place.  The horses were probably stolen in the Northern part of the Territory, or from the vicinity of Cheyenne.  The prisoners are all Mexicans.    


1869 June 24: Colonel Schofield of the U.S. Army and Colonel Craig, a rancher of Huerfano honored the Chieftain office with a call on last Saturday.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 1869 July 8: Mrs. Ellen McEllegutts, of St. Louis, is suing for a divorce and a return to her original cognomen. If the jury are men of taste, they will unhesitantly grant her petition. McEllegutts!! Whe-e-ew! Colorado Daily Chieftain


4-20-1870 Green Russell, leader of the original Georgia company that made the first gold discoveries in this region and the first settlement in Auraria - now west Denver 1858, has just returned at the head of a colony of Georgians and North Carolinians numbering one hundred and fifty persons. About two-thirds of the number are men and the balance equally divided between women and children. They are to settle in Huerfano Co. and engage largely in stock raising.

5-26-1870 Colorado Weekly Chieftain (advertisement) Tabeguache Flouring Mills - These Mills, located on the Upper Huerfano near Badito, are now in complete ________ ___ and fully prepared to do merchant and _______ work to the satisfaction of their customers. The Highest Market Rates will be Paid for Grain. Flour always on hand, and for sale at the lowest cash prices. D.J. Hayden & Co.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain 6-23-1870 We would call especial attention to the new advertisement of Hamilton Bros., to be found in another column of this paper. These gentlemen have bought the large herd of American cattle formerly owned by Seth M. Hays, Esq., and have also bought out a number of thorough-bred Durham bulls and cows from Bourbon county, Kentucky. The quality of their stock is not surpassed in Colorado, and those desirous of purchasing good cattle should not fail to call on Hamilton Bros., on the Upper Cucharas in Huerfano County.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain 8-4-1870 (Advertisement) Hamilton Bros. at Francisco's Ranch, On the Upper Cucharas, keep constantly on hand a supply of gentle American Milch Cows, Stock Cattle, and Beef Steers, Which they will sell at prices to suit the times. Thos wishing to purchase good stock might do well to give them a call. Hamilton Bros., Badito, Huerfano County, Colorado Territory.

10-27-1870 Colorado Weekly Chieftain Notice- All persons are hereby cautioned against purchasing the property known as Tabegauche Mills, which is located in Huerfano County. I own one-third of said property and no complete title can be made unless I join in the conveyance. (signed) W.H. Chapman


5-16-1872 Colorado Daily Chieftain 1872 Four wagons loaded with wool belonging to Ferd. Meyer and Co., Badito, passed through town yesterday going to the end of the track.  

Colorado Daily Chieftain 5-16-1872 A fine drove of cattle, owned by the Hamilton Brothers, down on the Cucharas, passed through town yesterday, on their way to the Denver market.  

Colorado Daily Chieftain 5-31-1872 Judge Matt Riddlebarger, one of the solid men of Badito, favored us with a pleasant call last evening, with a budge of items from that section of country.  

Colorado Daily Chieftain 6-8-1872 We received a call yesterday from Capt. C.D. Hendron, from the Cucharas. He reports everything lovely in that part of the country, and that Walsenburg has not yet been attacked.

1872 June 13: MARRIED: CHAPMAN - SMITH at the residence of Mrs. Miller, on the Muddy, June 9th by Reverend O.P. McMains, Mr. Abel Chapman to Miss Lena Smith. Colorado Daily Chieftain

1872 June 13: MARRIED: WARRANT - SMITH at the residence of Mrs. Miller, on the Muddy, June 9th by Reverend O.P. McMains, Mr. James Warrant to Miss Ida Smith. Colorado Daily Chieftain

1872 July 17: NOT DEAD - Jose Pedro Gonzales, the Mexican who was shot through the lungs by a Texan on the Cucharas a few days back, was not dead at last accounts, as was at first reported. He will probably recover. Much blame attaches to the sheriff who followed the assassin to Trinidad, and although close at his heels, took no steps towards his arrest. Colorado Daily Chieftain  

Colorado Daily Chieftain, July 18, 1872 FORT GARLAND, C. T., July 8, ''72. EDITOR CHIEFTAIN: - I have just returned from a two week's horse hunt in Pueblo and Huerfano counties.  I found everything in its proper place except the horse.  On the Huerfano crops are good, but so much land planted as usual, though enough perhaps to supply all.  The Greenhorn and St. Charles are planted from end to end.  I have never seen better crops, or so much land in on those creeks.  I stopped a night with Uncle Zan who was at home undergoing a severe attack of lamentation.  He said he had returned a day previous from the races, and was not satisfied with the result of them; you know the balance.  John Hicklin still stays on the Greenhorn, and is overflowing with industry and profanity.  He still curses that "enchanted duece." The work cattle belonging to a Mexican lumber train made a raid on the Hicklin Brothers' crops, and cleaned up a hundred and forty dollars worth. This shoud be a warning to freighters and travellers. John Warner was busy branding a large herd of cattle, and initiating himself in the cattle business. I attended some of those roundups that we read of.  The system is a good one in my opinion, but do not approve of the stray part of it.  I will not give my reasons, but leave those concerned to do so. The grass in that portion of the territory is better than I have ever seen it.  There is plenty of water for farming purposes, though it has been very little needed.  Take it all together, the Greenhorn and St. Charles country is improving beyond all expectations, and, in no very distant day, Southern Colorado will work on the near side of independence. On my return coming up the Huerfano, the gentler sex of that creek could be seen flying in the direction of Mr. Seabring's, where they said there was to be a fandango-baille-hop-dance-party, and my word for it Mr. Editor, there was one there. I stopped at Butte Valley a few minutes and saw Joe Abrahms shuffling up goods and making a noise equal to fifteen young kittens on a bearskin, though he said that was his business. After a few miles travel homeward bound, I found H. L. Lefton tearing things in a similar style as Joe.  There I flew up for the night.  I was well fed, slept well, and was asked to call again.  I had almost forgotten the meeting of Calach (?) Coniatch (?) Horace Greeley, or whatever he calls himself, with about two hundred of his Ute brethren going north.  He said they were not on the fight, notwithstanding they had passed ----- Walsenburg. I crossed the range and made my way straight to San Luis, where court had just adjourned.  There was no business of interest transacted at this term, and we are all glad of it.  Judge Bradford and E. J. Hubbard were the only members of the bar present. Judge Bradford's family visited San Luis during court week.  Tommy said he was looking for a few items, but could see nothing but natives. Judge Hallett and party departed for Conejos yesterday.  They have our best wishes with them, and we hope to see them again.   Crops are somewhat backward here, but there is an abundance of good grass and fine trout. Do you know, Mr. Editor, of anybody that would like to buy a grant?  If so send them over here.  I understand that Gilpin wants to sell his.  He says he will sell improved lands for a few dollars an acre, and take it in three cent postage stamps at $2.50 a hundred. A. Grant, will do for president, but I would not advise new comers to settle on one.  If they want a good ranch let them come.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 7-24-1872 Taxes will be collected for Huerfano County at the store of Ferd. Meyer and Co., Badito, Wednesday, July 10.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 7-24-1872 Jumping Claims Attempted Murder on the Cucharas - Some time ago, an honest, well disposed man, named Denton, who has a large family dependent upon his daily exertions for support, took possession of a claim on the Cucharas, a few miles west of Walsenburg, and proceeded to improve it, with the idea of making a permanent home. Mr. Denton had remained upon his claim but a short time, when another party, named Brown, father and son, came in and took the claim adjoining. One of those trivial disputes concerning boundary lines, so common in a new country, soon originated, and the result was that Brown pulled up a number of stakes, claiming a portion of Denton's land as his. He further said that he intended to hold it, at all hazards, and that he would blot out from existence the first man who attempted to dispossess him. The disputed territory was covered with a fine crop of grass, and on Friday last Mr. Denton took his scythe and went to mowing, congratulating himself, while doing so on the splendid growth of upland verdue, which dame nature had placed at his disposal. While thus engaged, and sweltering in the perspiration caused by honest toil, Mr. Denton glanced over his shoulder and saw Brown and his son coming toward him, armed with guns. Knowing the threats that they had made and suspicious that they were coming for no good purpose, Mr. Denton threw his scythe upon the ground and secreted himself behind some bushes, to await further developments. He watched for some time, but could see nothing of either Brown or his hopeful son, and he came to the conclusion that they only intended to scare him a little, and had gone back. Impressed with this idea, Denton emerged from his hiding place, and picking up his scythe, was about to resume his work, when all at once there came a sharp, sudden, deadly crack of a rifle, while simultaneous with the report Denton felt a ball ripping along between his undershirt and body. The direction showed that the ball had been aimed directly at his heart, but the marksman miscalculated the distance, and the ball fell short, passing between the shirt and abdomen, but not breaking the skin. The little circumstance had the effect however, of convincing Mr. Denton that he was not wanted there, and he went without waiting for further explanation, while Mr. Brown came the next morning and took possession of the hay, but was soon after served with a warrant for his arrest procured by Denton. This of course will lead to an examination and possibly some new developments. As the case is stated to us it seems to be an outrage on the part of Brown, demanding the most prompt and severant punishment of the law.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-3-1872 Card From The Sheriff of Huerfano County - Ed. Chieftain – In your issue of July 18, in a local "Not Dead", you take occasion to say "much blame attaches tot eh sheriff who followed the assassin to Trinidad, who, although close at his heels, took no steps towards his arrest." The idea conveyed is that the sheriff of Huerfano county, where the killing was done, is the one to whom much blame is attached. I had no information of the killing till late in the evening, about nine o'clock. The deed was done early in the morning, but no warrant was delivered to me, and I knew nothing about the affair until informed by a man living on the Cucharas, who said that five men were after the assassin. I was called to the Cucharas the third day afterwards, and asked at once for assistance to proceed after the murderer. Three of them were in the gang and I wanted assistance, but could get no person to volunteer so I returned home. You will please understand that the sheriff referred to was not the sheriff of Huerfano county. Thomas Sproull, Sheriff of Huerfano County.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 9-24-1872 Mr. A.T. Seabring of Badito is in town.

1872 October 12: MARRIED: HITCHCOCK - BIGLOW on the 12th inst. at the residence of bride's mother, by Reverend O.P. McMain, Mr. David M. Hitchcock to Miss Rilla Biglow, both of Santa Clara, Huerfano Co., Colo. Colorado Daily Chieftain

1872: Four wagons loaded with wool belonging to Ferd. Meyer and Co., Badito, passed through town yesterday going to the end of the track. Colorado Daily Chieftain


Colorado Daily Chieftain, March 14, 1873 COMMUNICATION. BADITO, March 10th, 1873. EDITOR CHIEFTAIN: - Badito is still alive, and buildings are being erected as fast as we can get material to work with. The country around is being settled up with good enterprising men, and I think that this summer will bring us two or three hundred settlers.  Every thing is very quiet on the Huerfano. The people on the Cucharas are expecting a lively time soon. That notorious horse thief that was captured in Pueblo some eighteen months ago and sent to the penitentiary for a year, made his escape about the 20th of January. He was known at Pueblo by the name of William Leisley alias William Fox. This fine horse thief has taken up his quarters on the Santa Clara. I suppose he is now trying to reorganize his band and get ready for his spring's work, but I, for one, will warn him and his gang if they make a raid in this county against the farmers' stock, he will get something more than a year at Canon City. We have some rope left and we think we know how to use it. If we don't there are some fellows at Pueblo who do. Hoping a long and happy career for your valuable paper, I bid you good-bye. A CITIZEN.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, March 22, 1873 OVER THE RANGE. What "Quack" Saw at Fort Garland - Colonel Pfeiffer, Tom Tobin, Etc., Etc. Special Correspondence of the Chieftain. MUDDY STATION, COLORADO, March 20th, 1873. EDITOR CHIEFTAIN: - The tide of emigration to the San Juan country has commenced to flow, and here and there along the road the traveler will meet conveyances of all descriptions, from a fine four-horse team down to the time honored burro and "Shank's mare," carrying parties of hopeful adventurers to our new El Dorado. Being curious to have a look at the much talked of Sangre de Cristo Pass and the San Luis Valley, I accepted an invitation, kindly given by a military friend, to visit Fort Garland, and will try to tell what I saw there, and my impressions of men and things in that locality. From Pueblo to Badito there is little to interest the traveler, unless it is the stomach comforting view of divers(e) herds of fat cattle, feeding on the excellent pasture which abounds in that region, which tempts him to rub his "bonded warehouse" and "thank God for fat beef, and plenty of it." BADITO. At Badito things have a business-like look. Our old friend, Seabring, has made extensive improvements there, and the store of Messrs. Ferd. Myer & Co., under the able management of Mr. McMullen, seems to be doing a lively trade. Dan Freeman, whose familiar countenance used to be seen on the box of one of our stage coaches, does the honors at the hotel, in good style. THE SANGRE DE CRISTO. A few miles of good road beyond Badito, and then we begin the ascent of this well-known pass. The road wouldn't make a first class race-track, and I don't believe that Seabring could be induced to run "White Cloud" over it, though it might be a good place to try the relative speed of mountain sheep and wild cats. There is at present very little snow on the road, but it is covered with an eruption of stones, varying in size from a peanut to a "prairie schooner," and the "dornicks" are as numerous as were the tin cans around Cheyenne in the palmy days of 1867. But notwithstanding all this, the freight teams seem to get through somehow. We managed to make the trip without accident, save the breaking of a king-bolt, which damage was soon repaired, our careful Uncle Samuel being wise enough to provide spare bolts with his "light wagons."  (It is a direct violation of Army Regulations to say "ambulance.") THE SUMMIT. After some hard scrambling on the part of the mules, and just a little improvised swearing on the part of the drivers and passengers, we reached the summit, and on our arrival there, came to the conclusion that we "had seen worse roads, but not much." At this point, in his "cottage near the sky," nearer to heaven than most dwellers in this mundane sphere will ever get, lives mine host Stearns, of the Summit House. He welcomed us to his airy home, and gave us a jorum of a most seductive drink, known to the initiated as "Blackstrap." (The derivation of this name I am unable to discover, but my friend, who is a New Englander, informed me that the component parts of the drink aforesaid, are rum and molasses, and that the receipt for mixing the same was brought over in the Mayflower by Miles Standish and Henry Ward Beecher's great grandfather. The Beecher ancestor was said to be very fond of this tipple, hence the mixed spirit and sweetness in Henry's discourses.)  Here we were informed that the road through the Abeyta Pass was, though a few miles longer, a much better route, with fewer stones, and not quite so many perpendicular hills. DOWN-HILL. After leaving the summit we begin the descent into the San Luis valley. There is a marked improvement in the road, and here and there we pass the log cabin of some settler who has here erected his household gods (goods?) and plowed and fenced a few acres of land, hoping, we presume, to "grow up with the country." The commercial prosperity of this region, is represented by a log shanty, with a sign made of a rough board, bearing the word "W H I S K Y," written thereon with charcoal. We felt comforted as we gazed on this evidence of advancing civilization, and doubt not that somewhere around that cabin may be found the renowned "axis of intensity," which the great and good Gilpin, has located in the valley. FORT GARLAND. After leaving the hills, a short drive over a good level road, brings us in sight of Fort Garland. The first view of the post, does not produce a favorable impression upon the stranger. The plaster has been broken from the walls in many places, by the violence of the winds which prevail in that neighborhood during the winter and spring and the picket fences in the rear are torn down in many places, probably from the same cause. For this, there is no one to blame, but the government authorities, who, though they can find men and means enough to interfere in the political squabbles of the Southern States, are unable to spare a few dollars for the repair of an important military post.  Inside, everything looks neat and trim. The quarters, though roughly built, are very comfortable, the walks and parade are as carefully attended to, as a gentleman's flower garden. General Alexander is in command, and the officers at present, stationed there, are Brevet Major Jewett, commanding company D, fifteenth infantry, Brevet Major Caraber, commanding F troop, eighth cavalry, Doctor Happersett, Post Surgeon, Brevet Major Hartz, Post Quartermaster, and Lieutenant Pond. Adjutant. The force at the post, is composed of Company D, Fifteenth Infantry, and F troop, Eighth Cavalry. Neither of the companies are full, and it seems to me, that should there be any trouble in the San Juan country, this coming season, that a reinforcement will certainly be necessary.   

Colorado Daily Chieftain, March 22, 1873 Jim Warrant, of the Huerfano, who we opine is fresh in the memory of the Pueblo boys, dropped into town yesterday, "all fresh and hale."       

Colorado Daily Chieftain 4-5-1873 We are informed that the mules stolen from the government at Badito on the 31st inst., were taken by Robert W. Easter, late of the 14th Infantry and now of the 8th Cavalry. Mr. Sunday was in charge of the team, but Easter took the mules and Sundays' revolver while the later was asleep. Sunday is entirely innocent. The mules have been recovered but the thief is still at large.

1873 April 5: We are informed that the mules stolen from the government at Badito on the 31st inst., were taken by Robbert W. Easter, late of the 14th Infantry and now of the 8th Cavalry. Mr. Sunday was in charge of the team, but Easter took the mules and Sundays' revolver while the later was asleep. Sunday is entirely innocent. The mules have been recovered but the thief is still at large. Colorado Daily Chieftain

Pueblo Chieftain 8-24-1873 Lawlessness in Huerfano County - Butte Valley, August 21, 1873 - Editor Chieftain: A fiendish raid was made last night, upon the sheep corral of A.D. Robinson, (a newly arrived citizen of this county), by eight or ten armed desperafos, acting in the interest of the cattle men of this county, who forcibly entered the corral, fired into the sheep, killing quite a number and wounding a great many, and drove the herd of twenty-four hundred all over the country. Mr. R. is now engaged in gathering together his flock, but his loss must be great, for his flock has been scattered in small bands all over this portion of the country. Shall it be, that Huerfano county will quietly submit to have the property of one of her citizens destroyed, or will she rise in her might and say thaty the perpetrators of this wrong shall be punished. I think the latter course will be adopted, and that by doing so, she will invite food and law abiding citizens to settle within her borders. Signed Citizen

1873 November 29: Captain Hardin and Mat Riddlebarger of Badito are visiting this city. Colorado Daily Chieftain

1874 March 17:The contract for carrying the mails from Butte Valley to Santa Fe, via Fort Garland, has again been awarded to Mr. A.T. Seabring of Badito. Colorado Daily Chieftain

Colorado Daily Chieftain, June 12, 1873 FENDO'S LETTER. Along the Greenhorn Mountains - Huerfano Valley - Huerfano Park. Special Correspondence of the CHIEFTAIN. GRAZING. This week I cannot send you any thing more than a desultory make up of notes, snatched by the way, on my short trip indicated in the caption. From Pueblo, south-westward to Muddy Creek, a distance of twenty miles, the range is very poor, and this part of our beloved grazing country, must have experienced an unusually dry streak of luck this spring. From the Muddy southward the grass improves, and as soon as we reach the vicinity of the Greenhorn river and further on south and south westward the range is magnificent in the extreme. From the foot of the Greenhorn mountains, away east as far as the eye can reach, the rich, green, grassy billows undulate in gentle slopes down to the horizon, and promise rich nurture for thousands of herds. At the Greenhorn post office, which is situated on Little Grineros Creek, thirty-two miles from Pueblo, the first road to the right leads into the San Luis Valley, by the Sangre de Cristo and Veta passes. The roads over the two respective passes fork in the Huerfano river bottom at St. Mary's post office. The road by the Veta pass crosses the river. The road over the Sangre de Cristo pass, as located by a late survey, passes up the Huerfano river on the north side and crosses at Badito. So far I have learned by inquiries from travelers, that the road over the Sangre de Cristo pass is the best. The Huerfano valley is one of the finest farming regions in the territory. The soil is very rich, plows up mellow, and is easily irrigated. Here, in the vicinity of St. Mary's, I saw living proofs that apples can be successfully raised here, and that apple trees will grow well. A Mexican ranchman there has bearing trees. I observed also, that Mr. T. W. Fouch, who has a ranch near St. Mary's and who is laying the foundation to what will be in a few years very fine grounds - had some very thrifty apple trees that will doubtless bear fruit this year. Mr. Fouch has planted various kinds of tree seeds, such as peach pits, walnuts, oaks, hickory and various other kinds. Many of these had already sprouted, and some were considerably advanced in growth. The walnuts he planted last fall in a box, to protect them against mice, and buried the box in the ground, setting the sprouted walnuts out in the spring. The peach pits were buried all winter, cracked and transplanted this spring. SHEEP AND CATTLE. Mr. Fouch has a Spanish Merino ewe, which, when one year old, sheared a fleece of eighteen and a half pounds.  This year, being now two years old, her fleece weighed twenty-two and a half pounds. He has about nine hundred head of Mexican sheep and improved breeds. Although the lambs came too early in the spring, a great many dying in consequence, the increase amounts to more than one lamb to each ewe. According to the gentleman's figures, nine cows and one bull, bought five years ago, have grown into a herd of one hundred and thirty cattle. PERMANENT LOCATION. An immense amount of travel passes St. Mary's, over the two roads, into the San Luis park and San Juan mining country. The settlers have a good prospect of the location of the Denver & Rio Grande railroad through here, which would probably cross the river a mile below the store. Mr. Fouch, on whose land there seems to be about the most convenient point of crossing, has offered all the ground for a depot. There is a good flouring mill three or four miles above the store, and now a company is making preparations to erect another, on Mr. Fouch's ranch. Just this side of the forks of the two roads over the passes, Mr. B. F. Howard is located, who keeps a wagon and repair shop, and does most excellent work at Pueblo prices. There is a great call here for wagon repairs. Mr. Howard, although not exactly keeping hotel, provides entertainment for travelers, as there is no hotel at St. Mary's. Mrs. Howard sets as good a table as one may find between Boston and the San Juan mines. While refreshing on her most excellent dinner, I thought the theory that "school-ma'ams" wouldn't make the good housekeepers, was about exploded. For Mrs. Howard is a lady of culture who taught during a considerable portion of her life, in eminent institutions of six different states; and now I can bear testimony that she ranks among the very best housekeepers in the valley. So, pitch into the schoolma'ams, ranchers! THE BARBARIANS. In many portions east the notion prevails that the territory is yet a wild and savage country, where the traveler finds little accommodation, and where we may scarcely expect to meet any more civilized individuals than scalping Indians, and wild "cattle men" whose hair has grown six inches long all over their whole body, and where, of course, the traveler is never trusted to a half-inch of halier strap. Let me cite one instance which will dispel these notions: On a former visit to St. Mary's I made the casual acquaintance of Mr. A. W. Burrows, of Yanckton, Dakota. This gentleman is quite a proficient geologist, and is prospecting in the Greenhorn mountains. I met him again in the mountains, and, as I had no team with me, he took all the representations of a stranger for granted, furnished me with his span of mares and light wagon to travel where I pleased, while he was digging in the solid rock of the Greenhorn. This would show a little more trust and accommodation than a traveler might expect in the vicinity of Boston. In the Huerfano Park, I found beautiful farming valleys along Williams creek and other small streams, as well as on the Huerfano river, with plenty of pinon and magnificent pine timber, in the mountains near by.  The valleys are well settled, and a great deal of land is under cultivation. On the upper Huerfano river, about eighteen miles above St. Mary's, or twelve miles above Badito, I found an excellent site for a flouring mill, which is very much needed in that country, on the ranch of Mr. Hamlet. The ranch is situated between the Huerfano and one of its tributaries. A ditch has been taken out of the Huerfano, and is so located as to empty into the tributary, where a fall of forty feet may be obtained. Here is a good opening for a mill. Mrs. Hamlet has a sweet little baby boy, the survivor of a pair of twins, who weighed two and a half pounds when three days old. Now, at three months of age, he weighs about three and a half pounds. May he never grow too fat. FENDO.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, July 6, 1873 FENDO'S LETTER. Living in Style - Huerfano Park - Turkey Creek - Surveying - A Few Vacant Tracts. (Special Correspondence of the Chieftain.) SETTLED. For the last two weeks I have been tramping over a small portion of the Greenhorn mountains, and shut up as I was, most of the time, in out of the way places, it has been impossible to send you any letters. Now, Mr. Editor, if you are not accustomed to the mountains, you may think that, in two weeks time, I ought to explore a vast region, and be able to send you a mess of hash that would fill ten, or twelve columns, if they are the long columns of the CHIEFTAIN. But I can assure you that, in two weeks, I was able to explore only a minute portion of the beautiful regions about the Greenhorn range; and, during that time, my traveling was confined to about one-half of a congressional township. Here, in township twenty-five, south of range sixty-nine, west I have stumbled upon a beautiful spot, on the west branch of Turkey creek, and have determined to locate here, permanently. I have located a ranch of 160 acres, for farming purposes. The location is near the head waters of the west branch, and a considerable portion of the tract may be easily irrigated, as I have water in abundance, pure and soft, and fall sufficient to bring the water to the highest plateaux, which form a part of the beautiful scenery of Huerfano Park. On some of these plateaux I propose to raise potatoes next year; and therefore, if your subscribers should become a little slack about paying up, I pray you entertain no unnecessary alarm, for I shall send you a few two and three pounders, rather than see you pinched and slab-sided. On first coming across this tract, while walking with my wife, we were so struck with the beauty of the situation and the lovely and commanding views of the surrounding mountain ranges, that, after another weeks tramp over the hills and through the valleys, which disclosed many charming places, we still determined to locate here. Our locality should not be confounded with the Turkey Creek north of here, which empties into the Arkansas river. Township twenty-five, north of range sixty-nine west, forms a part of the Huerfano Park. The three branches come together near the southern line of the township, and the creek continues through township twenty-six, range sixty-nine, and empties into the Huerfano river a few miles above Badito. There are a few vacant tracts here yet, which might be homesteaded or pre-empted. I believe I could point out two or three quarter sections to new comers. The township is mostly settled by Mexicans, a great many of whom wish to sell out their squatter's right, before filing their homestead or pre-emption papers. Some good ranches may be had for from $100 to $500. The country is not adapted to extensive stock raising, but is chieftly a farming country. As yet there are but few whites in the Turkey Creek settlement. Among the early pioneers of this country is Mr. Mahan, who has a good ranche, prettily located on the middle branch, a short distance above its confluence with the west branch; and also Mr. Montague Garnard, whose ranche is located one mile south of Mr. Mahan's on the main Turkey creek. Mr Garnard has the western fever, and offers his ranche with about forty-five acres of crop for sale for for $500. Who ever knew the western fever to stop short of the jumping off place? HOW TO LIVE IN STYLE HERE. Our style of living is commensurate with the grandeur of pioneer life. We are camped in a tent, (two of us, Mrs. Fendo and yours, too humble to mention) 7 feet by 14. The tent has a partition as an extra appendage of palatial splendor, giving us a bedroom and a parlor. Our kitchen is as extensive as out of doors can make it. But OUR GRAND AND EXPENSIVE COOK-STOVE must astonish even native Coloradoans. Thirty-five cents, sum total! and one half day's tremendous hard work of Fendo. I built two walls of rocks and mud, about one foot high and seven feet long, and fifteen inches apart. In front I laid a piece of sheet iron, about 20 inches wide and two feet long, and which cost 35 cents in Pueblo, across from one wall to the other, leaving the front open. Then I covered the remainder of the space between the rock walls with flat stones and mud. At the end I left a fair and square hole for the smoke to escape just where I wanted it to. The whole affair is to be topped off, over the square hole, with a grand monumental chimney as soon as I have recovered from the backache. The machine works to perfection, and is an ornament to Huerfano Park. A CHEAP SURVEYOR'S COMPASS. I had no difficulty in finding the section lines and corners by means of a rude compass, constructed as follows; in a piece of pine board, about two inches wide and a foot long, I bored a hole in the center, and then whittled a pivot on a pole about five feet high, so that the piece of pine would work easily on the pole horizontally. Then I nailed two uprights to the piece of pine, about three quarters of an inch high. On these uprights I planted two pins perpendicularly, and then drew a thread from one pin to the other, at the foot of the pins and over the top of the uprights. I set a small pocket compass on the pivot so that the horizontal piece of pine would turn under the compass and the thread over it. Whenever I wished to survey a line, having found one section corner in the township, I stuck the pole in the ground, put the pocket compass on, let the needle settle, turned the needle 13 degrees 30 minutes east of north, and then, by means of the thread stretched over the compass, brought the two pins in range north and south or east and west. By measuring my steps I easily found how many would make a mile, and thus I found half mile and mile corners without much trouble, sometimes stumbling over them, sometimes missing a corner fifteen or twenty steps. As I have stated before, I know of but two or three vacant tracts of irrigable land that might be occupied by homesteaders or pre-empters; and I would not induce immigrants to come in here in large numbers with the expectation to find plenty government land, and then go away disappointed. But many good farming ranches may be obtained very cheap. The country is very beautiful and picturesque, and well worth looking over by those seeking new homes in Colorado. New-comers will find Mr. Mahan, whose residence I have designated above, willing at any time to give all information in his power. And up on the west branch of Turkey creek, the highest settler up, they will find M. Custers, who will be happy to show them sections and corners, and such vacant tracts and ranches for sale as he may know of. Hereafter I wish to give your readers a more minute description of this portion of Colorado. FENDO.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, August 21, 1873 George Van Moll is on a flying trip to Pueblo.  He reports the crops excellent on the Huerfano.  

Colorado Daily Chieftain, August 29, 1873 FENDO'S LETTER. Topography of Huerfano Park. [Special correspondence of the CHIEFTAIN.] Huerfano park is that section of country situated in southern Colorado which is bounded on the north (by) the entire linear distance of about 25 miles by the Greenhorn mountains, which range of mountains also forms that portion of the eastern boundary line running from the northeast corner of the park about thirteen miles south to the Huerfano river, at a place called Badito. From here the boundary line of the park continues south about six miles further, without any very distinctly marked natural line of division, running to the vicinity of the Black Hills, a low range south of the Huerfano. The southern boundary line is marked by the Vita and Sheep mountains (each of which is composed of two longitudinal peaks) for a distance of about ten miles; then by the Old Baldy mountains. The western line is bounded by the Sierra Blanca mountains as the southern portion, and the Sangre de Christo mountains as the northern portion of the line. In naming the Sierra Blanca mountains as the southern portion of the western boundary of the park, I rather mean the foothills of the same: or I may err here, and it may be the range east of the same, which to my knowledge has not yet been named. The northern boundary line has a general trend east and west, and is also the boundary line between Fremont and Huerfano counties. The eastern line has a trend about due south, and for a distance of about five miles from the northeast corner forms the boundary between Pueblo and Huerfano counties. The highest peak of the Greenhorn range is situated at the nourtheast corner of the park. The southern boundary line has a trend west by about twelve degrees south. The western boundary trends north by a slight deviation west. The western portion of the southern line and the southern portion of the western line form the boundary between Huerfano and Costilla counties. The northern portion of the line forms the boundary between Huerfano and Saguache counties. The northeast corner of the park is about twenty-four miles south and twenty-four miles west of Pueblo, or about thirty-four miles linear distance southwest. Specific geography of the mountain portions of Colorado is not very specific as yet, nor well defined. Writers frequently make mistakes and parks and mountains are greatly misplaced. One writer of the CHIEFTAIN lately placed Huerfano park in the San Luis park, when in fact the western boundary described above divides Huerfano from San Luis park. For these geographical reasons (who wouldn't like to put in such a word as that now and then?) I have been particular in defining the location of the park. AREA. This park embraces about nine entire congressional townships, and fractional portions of seven or eight more. The entire area is approximate to 455 square miles. Throwing off one fourth for the roughest portion, there remains an area of about 341 square miles of such land as might all be utilized for agricultural purposes, were this a reasonable country, that is, did we have as much rainfall as there is in the eastern states. How much of this land can be brought under irrigation, will require some labor to estimate with any degree of correctness, but I will give the amount to the reader hereafter, as nearly as diligent inquiry and observation may determine the same. TOPOGRAPHIC. I am aware that the CHIEFTAIN circulates extensively in the states, and I believe that most of its readers would peruse with interest some practical descriptions of portions of southern Colorado, plain, truthful and ungarnished. These readers mostly expect to make Colorado their home. They are chiefly practical men and women, who care nothing for incipient touches or flowery rhetoric, which are of no account in giving descriptive information. But these people want to know just what kind of a country we have, how it looks, how it is adapted to agriculture, stock raising, etc., what comforts one may enjoy and what disadvantages one may encounter, what we can raise, and what we can't, how much it rains, and more minutely, how much it don't, etc. It is my purpose to give such a plain, ungarnished description of Huerfano park, and this description may in most respects apply equally to many other mountain portions of Colorado. The principal stream of the Huerfano park is the Huerfano river, which heads in the western portion of the park. At Badito, on the eastern boundary of the park, the southernmost spur of the Greenhorn range is intercepted by the Huerfano river, which is crowded into a narrow channel by the rocky bluffs formed on either side. Thus the mouth of the Huerfano canon is formed. Here the traveler enters into the Huerfano park. Badito has one large store building, and a wing formerly used as a hotel, stables, and one dwelling, all very neatly built of adobe. At present quite a good stock of general country goods is kept by the Heidler Bros., of Pueblo. Passing into the park and up the river, the traveler will be surprised that the name of the caon was given to the portion of the valley. The bluffs at the mouth of the canon are not remarkably high (about 150 to 200 feet), and immediately after passing Badito the valley expands until, before one travels one and a half miles, a valley opens to the view of from one to three miles wide, with gentle slopes on one or both sides of the river, and nowhere are there stupendous bluffs that hedge in the channel. The first tributary the traveler encounters, passing up the river, is Turkey creek, which empties into the Huerfano on the north side, or left bank. Here we will leave the Huerfano and its fruitful valley, a description of which is deferred to a future letter, and follow up into the Turkey creek country, with which I am more thoroughly acquainted than any other portion of the park. A topographic description of Turkey creek country will also answer for many portions of Huerfano park. FENDO.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, August 29, 1873 Undoubtedly, a great amount of bad feeling exists in Huerfano county, between the wool growers and cattle raisers.  It is to be hoped that the candid and law-abiding citizens of all classes in this portion of Southern Colorado will take the adjustment of this difficulty in hand, and adopt measures that will prevent further disturbances.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, October 2, 1873 FENDO'S LETTER. Topography of Huerfano Park, V. WILLIAMS' CREEK. In the description of the Huerfano Park so far, the country on the left or north bank of the Huerfano river, and bounded on the north by the Greenhorn range, has been duly considered for a distance of seven to nine miles west from the eastern boundary of the park. In this small scope of country so many peculiar topographical features presented themselves, so manifold and variagated were the peculiarities and sceneries, that the four preceding letters would scarcely have done justice to the subject, had they emanated from a more able pen. According to the course marked out in letter four, the country west, intercepted south by the Huerfano valley, and north by the Greenhorn range, is to be next considered. Advancing westward from the headwaters of the western tributary of Turkey creek, the explorer has but to walk a distance of one quarter of a mile to the top of the ridge which skirts the valley on the right bank, to behold the beautiful valley of Williams' creek spread out at his feet. Williams' creek, like Turkey creek, issues from the Greenhorn range. Its general course is south. It has but few branches and tributaries. The length of its course, after issuing from the mountains, is about nine miles. Its fall is considerably less than that of Turkey creek. The valley is from one half to a mile wide. It is widest near the mouth, where it extends perhaps one and a half miles. On either bank of the creek, for the first three miles up, and then principally on the left bank, the valley has a gentle slope from the bordering bluffs and ridges towards the stream, and the location is peculiarly favorable to easy irrigation. The stream carries scarcely sufficient water to irrigate the entire valley, but a breadth of land one half mile wide might easily be irrigated throughout the entire length of its course. Most available farming lands along its course have been taken up.  Near the headwaters there are located three or four American families, the remainder of the valley is occupied by Mexicans. Williams' creek issues from the mountains in the township 25, range 70 west, or a little to the north of it, but near the eastern range line. This township has not yet been subdivided, or sectionized, and the bearings of the creek, prominent points and trends of the ranges, are not well defined on the maps. It runs south, bearing slightly east, until crossing the lower section of the township east, it empies into the Huerfano river a short distance east of the range line between 69 and 70, having made a departure east from a southern course of about one (and) a half miles in a course of nine miles. The mouth of Williams' creek, therefore, is about thirteen miles west of Badito. On the right bank of the creek the valley is bordered by bluffs densely covered with pinons, the bluffs varying in altitude from 50 to 100 feet. The country west is very much similar to that intersecting the branches of Turkey Creek. The reader will remember the mountain glades, or plateaux hedged in on all sides by pinon groves, heretofore described. They are found everywhere in the park in the intervals between the streams and between the Huerfano and the mountains. On the left bank the dividing ridge of the vally is of a peculiar formation. It is sandy and comparatively free from rock. This is a distinguishing characteristic from nearly all the ridges. There are unmistakable evidences of the valley having been scooped out, so to speak, and the left ridge thrown up by glacial action. First, from the left bank of the creek there is a very gentle and gradual rise to the foot of the ridge, then a steeper ascent, and near the top of the ridge the sand is scooped up into a sharp comb. From the top eastward towards Turkey Creek there is a gradual descent. From this ridge towards Williams Creek, narrow, sharp, and long ridges extend in a southerwesterly direction, varying from one fourth to one mile in length. Further down the valley, these secondary ridges assume a more westerly trend. These ridges like those on the right bank are also covered with the pinon, though not so densely as the former. On the creek there is but little timber. A few aspens and cottonwoods grow on the immediate banks. The soil of the valley is very rich, though in places near the ridges on the left side of the valley somewhat sandy. There were heavy crops of wheat raised this year two or three miles from the mouth of the creek. In some parts the virgin soil is thickly grown over with the prickly pear, which is however easily iradicated, as it has very light roots. The soil is remarkably mellow and easily broken. From the top of the high sandy ridges near the headquarters (about 150 feet high) the scene below is picturesque in the extreme. The beholder by a gentle ascent from the east, up a grassy slope, suddenly arrived at a sharp, almost overlaying comb of a sand ridge, sees spead out under him, numerous little glades, grassy valleys and timbered little knolls and ridges grouped together into a most charmingly romantic and diversified whole. This scenery, as the reader knows, is formed by the secondary ridges. Beyond these secondary ridges the valley proper, with its gently sloping sides, covered with fresh verdure and its bright green line along the windings of the stream, formed by the cottonwood, relieves the intricate scenery immediately below the beholder's feet. For nine miles the eye of the beholder may follow the valley and the river in its course down to where a broader belt of bright green and golden hues, formed by the grassy meadows and bright yellow wheat fields, intermingled with the wild sunflower, indicates the Huerfano valley. The water of Williams' creek, like that of Turkey creek and all its branches, is soft, and it is the delight of good housekeepers, who revel in clean linen, and the snowy sheets so soft and grateful to the touch, when after a days hard tramp in the mountains, the prospector or hunter seeks repose between their inviting folds, in the hospitable cabin of the ranchman's good housewife, or his own domicile. Well, Mr. Editor, that's topography. But then, I can assure you, there is a difference between the topography of a bed made up by an old bachelor and that finished by the gentle touch of (a) woman's experienced hand. FENDO.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 11-29-1873 Captain Hardin and Mat Riddlebarger of Badito are visiting this city.

Colorado Daily Chieftain, December 10, 1873 FENDO'S LETTER. Topography of Huerfano Park. Correspondence of the CHIEFTAIN, UPPER HUERFANO VALLEY. All of the country on the left bank of the Huerfano river has been described in previous letters, except the valley of the river itself. This tract described, embraces that portion of the park which lies between the valley of the Huerfano and the Greenhorn range, from the eastern boundary of the park, at Badito, to its western extremity, the Sangre de Christo mountains. Next in order, is an examination of the valley of the Huerfano river. As I wish to speak of the features of the mountain range and a mountain pass near the head waters of the river, I will begin with a section of the upper valley. As the place of beginning I shall select, then, a point about five miles above Gardner. Here, the valley is about one and a half miles wide, and most of the valley is bordered by pinon covered bluffs, very rocky in places, which rise to the height of about one hundred to one hundred and fifty feet. North of these bluffs, considerable table lands stretch out farther north, and thus afford moderately good grazing. North of these again, other pinon covered bluffs rise higher, and from the tops of these vast, undulating prairies stretch out north toward the Wet Mountain valley and west toward the Sangre de Christo range. The valley of the right bank is skirted by low bluffs, covered with the inevitable pinon, like the bluffs on the left. Back of these extensive grassy plateaux are found, ever and anon intercepted by pinon groves, forming those glades so often referred to in these letters. From these bluffs to the boundary of the park, is but a short distance. As the traveler passes up the river from the point I have chosen as the beginning, he has just passed the westernmost of the two Sheep mountains, which is about one half mile south of the bluffs. From here on up for three or four miles, the Sangre de Christo range is from one half to one and a half miles distant. As stated, most of the valley land lies on the left bank, and here some very fine looking and favorably situated farming land is found. There are tracts of a mile square, which lie on a seeming dead level, though the river here has about seventy-five feet fall to the mile. There are spots where small rocks crop out, but notwithstanding this, the soil is extremely fertile and easily cultivated, and especially easy to irrigate. The bluff, a mile distant to the north, enclosing this valley of the left bank, afford great protection for cattle. In some places these bluffs are inaccessible, and large fields for pasture may be fenced in by running a sort of semi-circular fence from one point of the bluff to the other. The valley here has a lower bottom (a mile or two up) from a hundred yards to a quarter of a mile wide, and this lower bottom is very fine natural meadow land, from which immense crops of hay are gathered annually. Portions of these lands are embraced in the ranches of Mr. Sharp, who raised 66 bushels of Norway oats on one acre; and the ranches of Wm. M. May, county surveyor of Huerfano county, and George May. Near the north point from which I started, Pass creek empties into the right bank; but this and its valley will be considered hereafter. Four or five miles farther up, the bed of the river is narrowly enclosed by high ridges which rise up 300 feet or more.  Here begins what properly ought to be called the Huerfano canon, although the general custom in the park is to apply that name to the entire valley from Badito up. THE MOSCA PASS. The construction of a wagon road, by the shortest and most convenient route from Pueblo across the mountains into the San Luis valley, and thence to the San Juan mines, is at present attracting a great deal of attention. The rich mines discovered and opened in the San Juan country during the past summer will attract an immense travel thither next summer, and most of this travel will pass by way of Pueblo, which will be the general outfitting point. Hitherto the travel has passed over two mountain passes called the Sangre de Cristo and Abeyta or Veta. But the route is circuitous, and the mountain portions to be passed over are said to be very rough. In view of the immense travel which may reasonably be expected during next summer, a good wagon road becomes an imperative necessity. Many advantages are claimed for the route over the Mosca pass. This pass is near the headwaters of the Huerfano, and over the range which forms the western boundary of the Huerfano park. And as the subject of a new route over this pass is attracting such general attention, I have examined the approaches to it with some pains. From the point last above described, where the river is suddenly hedged in by high ridges, there is a rapid but uniform ascent. The ridges, or bluffs, rise up rather abruptly on either side of the river. A wagon road would have to be "worked," or made, most of the distance up this canon, else it would be so extremely "sidling" as to be utterly impassible. But the difficulty of constructing a road not at all sidling and of a very uniform ascent would be slight compared to other mountain portions. The bluffs are in some places very rocky, but nowhere are there immense boulders, or serious obstructions to overcome. Then there are places where there is already a natural road bed along the bottom of the river. One of the greatest advantages of a road up this canon, it seems to me, is the fact that nowhere, there would be a very abrupt or sudden ascent. No very steep hills to climb, hence no very heavy pulls, if the road is at all well worked. The most feasible route would lie up this canon of the Huerfano river on the left bank, and up the left bank of the first creek which is encountered emptying into the left bank. Then the road might continue up this creek (the name of which I could not learn) or turn up the first or some other dry canon, to the vicinity of the southwest corner of township 26, south of range 71, west. From this point the route would lie due west, through an open prairie country, about three and a half miles to the Mosca pass. I have lost the memorandum of the distance from the mouth of the canon proper of the Huerfano to the corner just referred to, and regret that I cannot therefore give the exact measurement, but I think the distance is between two and three miles. The latter end of the road of three and a half miles would require very little working. Of the country on the other side of the range, I know nothing from personal observation. The approach to the Mosca pass just described, would seem to be the best from any point in the Huerfano park, as far as my observation extends. The other approaches, I think, have all more or less of very abrupt ascents, not easily to be overcome. The Mosca pass is the lowest, or one of the lowest in the range, perhaps about 1500 feet lower than the Sangre de Cristo pass. The route from the Mosca pass to the San Juan country, is about 26 miles nearer than any other and this, it is said avoids the objectionable sand-hills on the other side. From Pueblo down south to Saint Mary's, and up the Huerfano river to the canon proper the road is very good, and the distance is 70 miles. The total distance from Pueblo to the summit of the pass is about 76 miles. A toll road is to be constructed over this pass, so I learn, to be ready for travel by the opening of spring. I have obtained no definite information, but I heard that work had already commenced. In the next, other portions of Huerfano valley will be considered. FENDO.


Colorado Daily Chieftain 3-17-1874 The contract for carrying the mails from Butte Valley to Santa Fe, via Fort Garland, has again been awarded to Mr. A.T. Seabring of Badito.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain 8-13-1874 Mr. John Francisco brings news from the Spanish Peaks that a few days since a number of Apaches made their appearance in the Cucharas, shot a herder through the arm with an arrow, and killed a number of sheep.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-27-1874 There are rumors of a Beecher-Tilton affair in the Huerfano Canon, with the difference that pistols, instead of statements, were the weapons used.


Colorado Weekly Chieftain 4-1-1875 Gardner, the village of Huerfano Park and our post office is steadily improving. Mr. Hewson has lately erected a new stone building and has stocked it with goods. A Mr. Hamlet has put up a blacksmith shop and Mr. Case has opened the Gardner House. The village has now two stores, one hotel, one blacksmith shop, and a post office. New dwellings are also to be erected shortly. The stores and hotel are respectable adobe and frame buildings. The present dwellings are of an inferior character - mere huts of logs, poles, and mud, such as the cabin in which Fendo flourishes at present.

Colorado Weekly Chieftain 4-1-1875 There are left but four ranches in this valley owned by Mexicans. These are the ranches of Francisco Armijo (160 acres), Felipe de Lus Martinez (190 acres), Jose Benito Archuleta (80 acres), and Jose Alviar (80 acres) all of which may be bought for small considerations.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-11-1875 Tragedy In The Huerfano Canon Shooting of a Supposed Cattle Thief - For some time past eh cattle owners of the Huerfano Canon have been suffering considerable loss through the operations of Mexican cattle thieves. Tho grasshoppers in the spring destroyed a considerable portion of the crops, and these Mexicans, like the most of their fellows, would rather appropriate the property of others when possible, than to turn in to hard work themselves. A number of cattle have been thus killed and the hides burned to prevent their being identified. Mr. Nathaniel Roy, who lives in the canon, has in common with his neighbors. Lost several head of cattle. On Friday last, having learned that a Mexican named Gomez, who lives on Williams Creek, had something to do with the stealing, Roy went to his house and accused him of the theft. Gomez attacked Roy with a club, and ordered his (Gomez') wife to bring him an ax. As soon as he obtained the ax, he again approached Roy, the latter telling him to keep off or he would shoot him. Gomez continued to advance, when Roy fired, shooting him through the heart and causing instant death. The facts of the case were so well known that no arrest was made and no inquest held. The cattle owners of the Canon are getting about tired of having their stock stolen, and if the stealing doesn't soon cease there will be some lively times there.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-18-1875 The friends of Major T.O. Bigney will be pleased to learn that he has issued the prospectus of a paper of his own, to be issued at Walsenburg, the county seat of Huerfano county, and to be known as the Huerfano Independent. The paper will be a twenty eight column sheet, and the first number will be issued on or about September 20th next. With the Major at the head of the concern there is no doubt as to its success, as he is one of the best journalists in the country. Huerfano county presents a good opening there being no paper in the county, or its neighbor, Costilla. We congratulate the good people of that section of our territory in being able to secure the services of the major in advocating and advancing their section of country through the medium of the Independent.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-24-1875 The Gomez Murder - Roy Again Arrested - A short time since, it will be remembered, we published an account of the killing of a Mexican named Gomez, by Nathaniel Roy, on Williams Creek, in the Huerfano Canon. Recently we received another version of the affair, and, as we wish to do justice to all parties, will also publish it. According to this later version it seems that Gomez had been in Roy's employ as a herder, and when he had worked for Roy for a month asked for some flour, which the latter refused to give him. Gomez worked one day after this, and on the next day was sick and stayed at home. Roy, in company with another man, went to Gomez' house, found the latter sitting near the door, and Roy angrily asked Gomez why he didn't come to work. The latter replied that he was sick and wouldn't work anyhow where he couldn't get paid for his labor. He said also that he didn't owe Roy anything and didn't propose to work for him any more. At this Roy struck Gomez a violent blow on his head, cutting him severely and knocking him down on his hands and knees. While in this posture, crawling, he knew not where, Roy shot the unfortunate man killing him instantly. Then in company with his friend, who acted as a witness, Roy went to Chavez plaza and gave himself up to a Mexican justice, who on the evidence of Roy's companion acquitted the accused. It seems however, that there were other parties who saw the killing and Roy has been re-arrested and placed in charge of the sheriff of the county.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 8-24-1875 Perhaps one of the largest social gatherings that ever took place in Huerfano county, was held at the residence of Don Vicente Chavez, at Chavez Plaza, in the Huerfano canon, on the occasion of the marriage of that gentleman's daughter to Senor Antonio De La Riva, of the same place. The wedding took place on the 17th inst., and dancing was kept up for three nights. About two hundred people, both Americans and Mexicans, were present, and all seemed to enjoy themselves. The young couple have our best wishes.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 9-17-1875 Nathaniel Roy, who is charged with the murder of the Mexican, Gomez, in the Huerfano Canon, and who broke jail at Walsenburg a short time since, is living in the mountains near his home. He says that he broke out of jail because he feared that he would be lynched by the Mexicans. Roy says that as soon as the district court sits he will put in an appearance with his witnesses, and stand a trial. He is confident that he will be acquitted. According to the latest information we have received about this matter, it appears that cattle stealing was carried on to a great extent in the Huerfano Canon, and the stock owners there had employed Roy as a detective to find out who the thieves were. He caught this man Gomez in the act of skinning a stolen steer. At the time of the murder Gomez had attacked Roy, and as a crowd of Mexicans were approaching Roy shot Gomez in order to make his escape. This, we are assured, is a correct statement of the affair.

Colorado Daily Chieftain 10-20-1875 A stabbing affray, we are informed, took place on the Goldsmith ranch, last Saturday night, during which, Pedro Martine, better known as "Mexican Pete", a well known bootblack, was severely stabbed by Antonio Baca, who lives on the St. Charles, near the Archuleta plaza. It appears that Baca and another man were fighting, the former had knocked the latter down and was about to stab him, when Martine asked him to desist. Baca immediately turned on Martine and stabbed him twice in the face, once above and once below the left eye, making severe but not necessarily dangerous wounds. Baca was not arrested.

1875 October La Veta: The first snow (on La Veta Pass) fell Sept. 20, according to the keeper at the Abeyta Pass Toll Gate.

1875 November 25: Marriage Notices from The Southern Christian Advocate, 1867-1878 page 214 By Rev. A. H. Quillian, in Walsenburg, Huerfano county, Colorado, Robert A. Quillian, Esq., to Miss Isabella Campbell. By Rev. W. A. Rice, November 28th, 1875, Dr. J. P. Holmes, of Macon, Ga., to Miss Ella S. Merritt, of Marianna, Fla.

1875 November La Veta: At the toll gate on Abeyta Pass can be found the best of accommodations for man and beast, with a good pilgrim house and lots of wood and water free.


Colorado Daily Chieftain 9-6-1876 The Murder of Suaso - La Veta September 5 - Parea was discharged this morning and immediately re-arrested on the charge of the murder of Suaso. The trial lasted all day, Messrs. Waldron and Quillian, prosecuting. The judge bound Perea over in two thousand dollars and the witnesses in two hundred dollars. Public opinion has changed and a determination is expressed that the prisoner shall go to Pueblo and not Walsenburg, fearing lynching. Suaso was buried this afternoon at Walsenburg. There is great excitement there over his death and that of Father Louis Merles, who died on the same day and near the same hour. The prisoner is still in charge of a strong guard.

1876 September La Veta: Great excitement prevails here at the present over some discoveries of gold quartz on the Spanish Peaks, assaying $103 to the ton.

1876 November La Veta: Twenty-three retail licenses were sold to businesses operating in town on the first day they were available.


1877 March La Veta: The town election will be the first Monday in April at J. McConnell's store. The election judges will be Andrew Francisco, John Shanks and W.A. Moore.

1877 March La Veta: Town Board laid over the ordinance presented concerning the prohibition of dance houses.

1877 April La Veta: There were 124 votes cast in the town election and J.M. Francisco, W.A. Moore, J.R. Brink, M.W. Brown and E.H. Belcher were declared elected as trustees. Col. Francisco was again elected chairman.

1877 May La Veta: Election judges Andrew Francisco, John Shanks, W.A. Moore, J.C. Adams, Frank Field and John Kemp were each paid $2.50 for their services.

1877 May La Veta: J.N. Baker was hired as town constable after a balloting which W. H. Harpham, the only other petitioner, lost.

1877 May La Veta: John C. Soward resigned as town clerk and recorder and J. N. Baker was appointed town constable.

1877 June La Veta: Members of the Town Board gathered three times this week but were unable to hold a meeting due to the lack of a quorum.


1878 January La Veta: Miss Potts was paid $3 by the town for housing the sick.

8-1-1878 Colorado Weekly Chieftain Information wanted of Major Wm. M. Downing by his sister, Mrs. Pettys, of Appleton City, St. Clair County, Missouri. Major Downing was last heard of by his relatives as running a freight train from El Moro, Colorado. Any information received by his widowed sister, Mrs. Pettys, who is in needy circumstances.

8-1-1878 Colorado Weekly Chieftain Deputy Sheriff Ed. Powell Tuesday arrested George Overturf, a well known resident of the Huerfano, who was indicted by the grand jury at the last session of court for the crime of cattle stealing. Mr. Overturf was admitted to bail in the sum of $300.

Return to the Huerfano County Home Page
© Karen Mitchell