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Glenwood Springs

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A huge hot springs pool, a restored Victorian bathhouse, and a grand hotel make the county seat (1883, 5,765 feet) Colorado's favorite place to “take the waters.” The Yampah (big medicine) attracted the Utes for centuries before Captain Richard Sopris found the hot springs. Taken ill, Sopris soaked in the Ute medicine springs and was healed. On the south side of Glenwood Springs he also encountered the solitary, symmetrical mountain named for him.

Prospectors staked out a townsite at the confluence of the Roaring Fork and the Colorado rivers in 1878. Mining engineer Walter Devereux arrived in 1883 and transformed the town into a hot springs spa. In 1887 the D&RG blasted its way through Glenwood Canyon, and the Colorado Midland arrived via the Roaring Fork valley. Both railroads promoted Glenwood as a tourist destination, while also tapping the rich coal deposits nearby.

Glenwood Springs has a residential district of note along Colorado Avenue between 7th and 12th streets. Among various bungalows, the finest is a Craftsman example, with river rock porch pillars and graceful gables, at the southwest corner of 11th Street. The Talbot House (c. 1900), 928 Colorado, is a frame Queen Anne. At 1008 Colorado, an oddly massed house enlarges upon a small Victorian brick cottage with a shingled second story opening onto second-and third-story porches.

Writing Credits

Thomas J. Noel

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