Martin Van Buren Wason established the first ranch in the area, 6 miles above Wagon Wheel Gap. Following the stampede to Creede, he built a courthouse and platted Wason (1891–1904) as an 80-acre townsite. Although designated the first county seat when Mineral County was created in 1893, Wason was short lived. Boosters from Creede hauled off the county records and also took the courthouse, plank by plank, to Creede, where it burned in 1946.
Wason's ranch house is a two-story stuccoed frame building, L shaped with a gable roof and a full-height gabled bay in the middle of the facade. Hipped roofs cover single-story porches between the bay and both ends of the building. The tall, narrow windows have pedimented lintels. Among various outbuildings are small rental cabins, updated with kitchenettes and large picture windows framing the jubilant, trout-filled Rio Grande.