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Hattie L. Hedges Trout

Reminiscences of the Early Days in Colorado

Electronic Edition

Source Information: Hattie L. Hedges Trout, "Reminiscences of the Early Days in Colorado," October 10, 1933. Original in the Archives of the Old Colorado City Historical Society, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

__Page 1 Reminiscences of the Early Days in Colorado

I came to Colorado with my parents and sister in September of 1866. We came in a stage coach with four big fine horses which were changed for fresh ones every ten miles all the way. They would have the horses all harnessed ready to hitch on when we stopped then away we would go for another ten miles. Lunches could be obtained at the stage stations but were very high priced. A cup of tea or coffee would be one dollar. We had lovely weather and a nice trip. It took seven days and nights to come from Quincy Illinois where we lived, to Denver. We were quite tired after the long journey. My father was not very well that being one reason for our coming to Denver also he had a brother here who urged him to come and try Colorado climate. He was greatly benefited and lived to be nearly eighty five years old. There was not much of Denver at that time. We lived in a little house near where the Union Station now stands. Everything was very high priced those days. Flour was ten dollars per hundred. Quart cans of fruit or vegetables were fifty cents per can. Soap twenty five cents per bar. And everything else according. Day board was ten dollars per week. And later in the season when snows came they paid one dollar per hour for shovelling snow from walks and streets. We lived in Denver about two years then came to Colorado City in 1868. There were very few houses here at that time

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and none in Colorado Springs or Manitou just a slab shed over the Soda Spring. We came here in stage coach from Denver and stopped at an old frame hotel that stood on the corner of Colorado Avenue and twenty eight street where the home of the Stockbridges now is located. Those were very exciting days as the Indians were on the war path here. People for miles around came and brought their families for protection from them, and were forted up in the old Anway house which was located at 2618 West Pikes Peak. As I remember it was a log house with a stairway going up on the outside. It still stands but has been remodeled and sided up and painted so no one could recognize it now. We were with others in the fort while

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my Father and other men stood guard on the hill north of town. We were living here when the three boys were killed by the Indians near where the Antler's hotel now stands. They were herding cattle when they were watched by the Indians from the hills. The oldest of the boys was young Everhart. I believe he was twenty one years old. The Robbins boys were younger. They were brought here and laid out in the old log building which was the first state house. It was located on the north side on Colorado Avenue between 26th and 27th streets. I can just remember of going with my sister to see the bodies as everyone was flocking there so horrified and grieved over it. Oh they were a terrible sight scalped and speared and they had placed

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their guns to their eyes and blew them out and faces and necks all powder burnt. Even after all these years I dread to recall the awful sight for at that time I hid behind my sister after a horrified glance at them. Oh those were terrible times for everyone so filled with fear and dread. The Indians also stampeded stock. The trail where they crossed Sand Creek east of Colorado Springs with the stock they drove away was a mile wide. Different tribes of Indians scalp differently. Some just took a very round piece of the scalp others took all over just leaving a few hairs in front of the ears. The Indians at that time attacked an old man by the name of Baldwin but found he had been scalped before so left him to die as they thought but he lived

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many years after that and finally met death by falling into a vat in an old slaughter house. After some time we moved to Pueblo and later to Wet Mountain Valley three miles south of Rosita. My Father helped dig the first prospect hole there which believe never developed anything to the company who were interested in it. While living there we had another experience with the Indians. My Father was working in a livery stable in Denver as there employment for him at home so mother and we three children were living there on the ranch alone. One day an Indian came galloping up on his horse and stopped and asked mother for biscuit. She gave him all she had. Then he looked at my sister who was fourteen years old at that time. He said nice squaw. You give me squaw.

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I give you fifty buckskins for squaw. You can imagine the fear of my mother thinking he might take my sister anyway. He said to mother you got man? She said yes back here. She was afraid to let him know she was alone but after awhile he got on his horse and rode away. What a relief to us but mother lived in fear and dread until my Father came home. After a time we moved to Canon City then to Pueblo for a time then we moved to a ranch on the Divide fifteen miles northeast of Palmer Lake where I met and was married to Mr. Trout January 1st 1880. After a few years there we went to Denver on a farm six miles west of Denver then September 18th 1887 we came back to Colorado City. Very lively times here then as the Colorado Midland

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had built their road through to the Western Slope. Everyone was at work and happy no depression here. Then we had to live in a tent until we built our home at 713 South 25th street. There were no houses to rent. Men were employed in the Midland shops days and we could hear hammering all times of the night building their houses to live in. Anthony Bott was called the Father of Colorado City. He was very benevolent and was called the Poor Man's Friend. He and many of the pioneer residents have gone to their last reward which if just will be great. Clem Kinsman another pioneer who had lived here most of his life in speaking of Colorado City one time told me somehow he could sleep better if he laid down in the shadow of old Pikes Peak. He too, passed away.

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Anthony Bott's log house where he lived in Indian times still stands. It is located just a few blocks west of my home on St. Anthony Street. They say there are portholes in it so they could protect themselves from the Indians by shooting thru them if they came there. I still live in my little home that was built in 1887 forty seven years ago. I love it and dear old Colorado where I have lived most of my life and it is my desire to end my days here and be laid to rest with my loved ones in the shadow of Pikes Peak. I am a member of the El Paso County Pioneer Association and the Half Century Clubs and I enjoy their meetings and look forward with pleasure to them and the reminiscences of the early days

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in Colorado City and Colorado Springs.

Written from memory by Hattie L. Hedges Trout for the El Paso County Pioneer Association and presented to them Tuesday evening October 10th 1933.

Copied for Charles Rogula, Jr. May 23rd 1934

By his true friend,

Mrs. Hattie L. Hedges Trout

 

Note from David Hughes, Old Colorado City Historian

The HIGHLIGHTED portion above in Hattie Hedges tale is the proof that, when the Arapaho Indians killed the two Robbin's boys and Charlie Everhart in 1868, their bodies were in fact 'laid out on the floor of the Garvin Cabin which still stands in Bancroft Park, Old Colorado City National Historic District. Not mentioned by Hattie was the fact, verified by other sources, including the Robbin's family, the two young (8 and 12) were NOT scalped by the Indians, but Everhart was.