Our partner the Wilkinson Public Library recently added a number of new issues to the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection, (CHNC). This new content includes a number of new and very unique titles from underrepresented counties in CHNC including San Juan, San Miguel, Summit, and Washington. In most cases these are the only known issues to exist of these early Colorado newspapers. Below are just a few highlights from the Library’s recent additions to CHNC.
The Gold Run Silvertip: Gold Run (Bear Creek Camp), San Juan County, CO
The Gold Run Silvertip, the only newspaper for the Bear Creek Gold Camp or Gold Run, San Juan County, published its first issue on June 17, 1893. In 1893 the newspaper reported, “Bear creek, or Gold Run, is the latest and best gold excitement which has broke out in Colorado. Two mines – shipping rich gold rock from grass roots is the best evidence which can be given that the excitement is well founded.”
It seems the paper paused publishing between July 1, 1893 and April 11, 1894 as mining interest in the camp dwindled. In late April 1894 a new town, called Junction City, was laid out at the mouth of Bear Creek. Forty Cabins, stores and a saloon were soon to be built.The paper was published by Colorado newspaper man and eventual playwright Lute H. Johnson. Johnson began his career at the Fort Morgan Times and later served as either editor, manager or writer at the Creede Candle, Leadville’s Herald-Democrat, the Denver Republican and the Denver Post. The Silvertip likely ceased publication sometime between May and November 1894 when Johnson was reported to have sold the Candle and moved to Cripple Creek. Eight issues of the Silvertip, possibly the only in existence are now part of the CHNC.
The Lindon Sun: Lindon, Washington County, CO
The Lindon Sun, was one of 3 newspapers published in 1890 in Lindon, Washington County (then Arapahoe County). Washington County is the 12th most extensive of the 64 counties of the State of Colorado with a total of 2524 square miles. Most of the land is dedicated to farming and ranching. Lindon is an unincorporated community established on the then proposed railroad extension going south from Akron. The Sun, “The Representative Republican paper of eastern Colorado”, was founded by William M. Dunn in January 1890 and was edited by W. H. Morgan. The CHNC includes one issue of the Sun published on November 6, 1890. This is the only known issue of the Sun.
The Saw Pit Hummer: Saw Pit, San Miguel County, CO
Sawpit, San Miguel County, first called Fall Creek, then Seymore, was a thriving placer camp founded in 1892 as a stop on the Rio Grande Southern Railroad. In 1896, the Sawmill mines were discovered and the town took its new name. Editor C. A. Woodmansee published the first issue of the Saw Pit Hummer in January 1896. The town was incorporated in 1897. The original Sawpit Store, still in operation today, opened in 1897 and has since served a variety of purposes. The CHNC now includes one issue of the Saw Pit Hummer – January 29, 1897.
The Ten-Mile News: Kokomo & Recen, Summit County, CO
The Ten-Mile News was published in Kokomo & Recen, Summit County, by W. S. Alexander between 1880 and 1883. Alexander was from Ames, Iowa, and spent much of his newspaper career in Colorado. In 1883 the paper boasted, “THE TEX-MILE NEWS Is the recognized organ of the mining Industry of the great Ten-Mile region, – a district which produces more bullion than any other in Colorado, with the exception of Leadville. As an advertising medium THE NEWS is unexcelled. “
Kokomo was a mining camp that sat at an elevation of 10,618 feet making it the highest incorporated town in 1879 when it was formally established. It was part of the Tenmile District that also included the mining camps of Recen and Robinson. It eventually merged with the neighboring camp of Recen. A fire nearly destroyed the town in 1881 but it rebounded and prospered until the silver crash of 1893 began its slow decline. The Kokomo post office closed in 1965 and the townsite was eventually abandoned. One issue of the Ten-Mile News, March 24, 1883, is now searchable in CHNC.With nearly 421,000 issues included in the collection, these are just a few of the unique and nearly forgotten stories that can be discovered in CHNC. If you think you might have unique issues of Colorado newspapers we encourage you to get in touch with the CHNC team at CHNC-Support@coloradovirtuallibrary.org.
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