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Saguache County Museum

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1908. Southwest corner of U.S. 285 and San Juan Ave.

This one-story, gable-roofed adobe building originally housed the school and then the undersheriff who guarded the jail next door. Its thick walls have been patched with concrete and painted to look like stone blocks. The jail to the south, with a center block of steel cells and a separate cell for women, was described when it was built in 1908 as “a marvel of protective confinement.” The original cell graffiti remain in this jail, which once accommodated the cannibal Alfred Packer. Beginning with a nutmeg grater and one display case in 1959, the museum has grown into a large operation with artifacts spilling out into the yard. Outdoor exhibits include a “Chapel of Ease” (privy), the back side of which consists only of a chicken wire screen.

Writing Credits

Thomas J. Noel


What's Nearby


Thomas J. Noel, "Saguache County Museum", [Saguache, Colorado], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Colorado, Thomas J. Noel. New York: Oxford University Press, 1997, 438-438.

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