Who Killed the Western Rail Lines?

In a few days, I will turn in my manuscript for Notorious Jefferson County, which is a regional history book about strange and infamous murder cases from the turn of the last century.

One “character” that appeared over and over in these stories was the Denver and Interurban tram (also called the Denver and Intermountain tram). Continue reading

The Sand Creek Massacre — An atrocity committed by John Chivington and the “Spider People”

This article first appeared in slightly different form in the Broomfield Enterprise September 18, 2007.

A couple years ago I went on a “tree tour” of Fairmount Cemetery in Denver. As we strolled around the pleasant grounds our guide named the various trees and explained their biology. At one point, as we gazed up at a beautiful white oak, a large memorial marker right in front of me caught my eye. I realized with a jolt it was the grave of Continue reading

Tragic Lyden Brothers were founders of Leyden

This article is an excerpt from “Notorious Jefferson County” by Carol Turner. It first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise.

In 1859, two ambitious Irishmen named Michael and Martin Lyden bought property and began raising stock in the northern end of Jefferson County. They enjoyed great success and were soon reported to be quite wealthy. One of the brothers, 40-year-old Michael Lyden, built a home in the foothills where Ralston Creek emerges from the mountains.

Around mid-June of 1866, Michael Lyden was reportedly followed home to his ranch from Denver by four unidentified men. These men hid themselves in the bluffs overlooking his ranch. Continue reading

Mary Wright: A Wild Ride of a Life

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise, March 16, 2008.

The original Broomfielders were a rugged lot, and one of the most durable was a pioneering lass named Mary Meikle Wright, whose wild ride of a life began in Scotland and ended on the west coast of the United States. Continue reading

My garden’s gone to hail

A version of this article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise September 14, 2008.

Last week an otherwise nasty heatwave was abruptly interrupted by a hailstorm that appeared out of nowhere, beating the hoof out of my beautiful irises and poppies. My greyhounds trotted around the house, looking up at the ceiling with their ears in odd positions. Continue reading

Shep, the famous toll-gate pooch (and Betty the greyhound)

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise September 16, 2007.

On August 14, 2007, I lost my sweet and beautiful greyhound, Betty Boop, to an unknown illness. In honor of her, and perhaps just to make myself feel a little bit better, Continue reading