Spurs and the Great West

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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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The Hueco Mountains are a range of mountains that rise in southern Otero County, New Mexico and extend 27 miles south into Texas, generally along the El Paso–Hudspeth county line just east of the city of El Paso, Texas. The highest point of the range is the Cerro Alto Mountain 6,703 feet in Hudspeth County.

The Hueco Bolson, a down-dropped area with an elevation of 4,000 feet above sea level, with sedimentary fill nearly 9,000 feet thick, lies between the Hueco and Franklin Mountains. Shallow, stony soils in the Hueco Mountains support oak, juniper, and some mesquite. The mountains were part of the Rocky Mountain trend, forced upward as part of the Laramide mountain-building period during the late Cretaceous, 60 to 70 million years ago.

The word hueco is Spanish for hollow, gap, or hole.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Trick riding refers to the act of performing stunts while riding a horse, such as the rider standing upright on the back of a galloping horse, using a specially designed saddle with a reinforced steel horn, and specialized kossak loops for hands and feet.

Horse riding stunts have been performed in many films, as well as in equestrian events such as Equitana and the official opening of the Australian Equine and Livestock Events Centre, rodeos, and much more.

Horse riding stunts were also performed on the musical theatre production of "The Man from Snowy River: Arena Spectacular". The trick riders for the show included Deborah Brennan and Zelie Bullen (née Thompson) (who has also taken part in other horse shows such as Equitana).

Trick riding has a very interesting story. It has not always been an American entertainment act. It was once used as a weapon for the Russian Cossacks who adopted it from the people of Caucasus and called it dzhigitovka. Cossacks were nearly unconquerable because they could easily hide from their enemies. When communism overtook Russia, some Cossacks were forced to leave the country. Many moved to America, where they used their talents for money. They became part of the entertainment community and soon Americans started catching on. Trick riding even became a rodeo event where the hardest tricks earned the most points. Trick riding as a competitive rodeo event came to an end in the 1940s. Trick riding became more dangerous and the horses became a lot faster as the trick riders became desperate for the prize money. Rodeo producers deemed trick riding too dangerous for competition and trick riding then became a specialty act in rodeos.

Trick riders such as Shirley Lucas and Sharon Lucas became famous horse stunt women doubling for many movie stars such as Marilyn Monroe, Lauren Bacall, Betty Grable, Lana Turner, and many more. In films, stunt riders have included Hank Durnew and Ken Maynard.

Rex Rossi was a World Champion Trick Rider in 1950 and 1961, World Champion Trick Roper 1971, and Hall of Fame Movie Stunt Man, a career that spanned 60 years. Rossi performed horse and falling stunts in Bonanza, Gunsmoke, and many western movies. He also stunt doubled for Clint Eastwood, Kevin Costner, Jeff Bridges, Roy Rogers, and Bob Steele. Rossi trick rode at Madison Square Garden for 19 consecutive years. His Veach Trick Riding saddle is on display at the Gene Autry Cowboy Museum in Los Angeles.

There are many horse riding stunts and many different variations of tricks, with each rider having an individual style. Tricks can be strap tricks or vault type tricks. Some tricks include the forward fender, layout fender (also known as the Indian Hideaway), one foot stand , spritz stand, shoulder stand, back drag, hippodrome, vault, reverse one foot stand, and spin the horn.

One type of trick riding is known as "Roman riding", and is usually performed as entertainment in rodeos, circuses and horse shows. In Roman riding, the rider stands atop a pair of horses, with one foot on each horse.

Roman riding is one of the older forms of riding, and was performed during the time of the Roman Empire. As many as five horses, with the rider standing on the inner three, have been ridden and jumped abreast. As many as nine horses, three teams of three abreast, have been ridden and jumped in tandem. Tricks such as trading teams while riding, riding a pony team between the horse team and jumping six- and nine-horse tandems are also performed. Sometimes riders will change teams at the trot, dance, ride backward and twirl a baton, and even jump through fire.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Septarian concretions, common in North Dakota, are carbonate-rich concretions containing angular cavities or cracks, referring to the cracks or cavities separating polygonal blocks of hardened material). Septarian nodules are characteristically found in carbonate-rich mudrock. They typically show an internal structure of polyhedral blocks (the matrix) separated by mineral-filled radiating cracks (the septaria) which taper towards the rim of the concretion. The radiating cracks sometimes intersect a second set of concentric cracks. However, the cracks can be highly variable in shape and volume, as well as the degree of shrinkage they indicate. The matrix is typically composed of argillaceous carbonate, such as clay ironstone, while the crack filling is usually calcite. The calcite often contains significant iron and may have inclusions of pyrite and clay minerals. The brown calcite common in septaria may also be colored by organic compounds produced by bacterial decay of organic matter in the original sediments.

A spectacular example of boulder septarian concretions, which are as much as 3 meters in diameter, are the Moeraki Boulders. These concretions are found eroding out of Paleocene mudstone of the Moeraki Formation exposed along the coast near Moeraki, South Island, New Zealand. They are composed of calcite-cemented mud with septarian veins of calcite and rare late-stage quartz and ferrous dolomite. The much smaller septarian concretions found in the Kimmeridge Clay exposed in cliffs along the Wessex coast of England are more typical examples of septarian concretions.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Happy thanksgiving!
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Alamo Village is a movie set and tourist attraction north of Brackettville, Texas, United States. It was the first movie location built in Texas, originally constructed for and best known as the setting for The Alamo (1960), directed by John Wayne and starring Wayne, Richard Widmark, Laurence Harvey and Frankie Avalon.

The set was built by James T. "Happy" Shahan of Brackettville, who in 1995 was named the "Father of the Texas movie industry" by Governor George W. Bush. Shahan began building the set on his ranch in September, 1957 for Wayne, who had tried for years to make a movie about the Battle of the Alamo for Republic Pictures, before finally breaking away to form Batjac Productions. Filming began in August, 1959.

Originally the set was to be facades of the front and sides of the buildings. However, Wayne ran out of money and called a halt to construction. Shahan agreed to continue working while Wayne raised more money, if Wayne would agree to building full sets with four walls, floor and roofs. Wayne signed on to the deal.

The set includes a full-scale re-creation of the Alamo compound as it would have appeared in 1836 (the real Alamo is in the middle of what is now Downtown San Antonio and is surrounded by modern skyscrapers). The set also includes a representation of the village of San Antonio de Béxar of the same time period. The building of the set required over 1.5 million adobe bricks (which were manufactured on site), 14 miles of gravel road and a 4,000-foot runway.

Shahan preserved the set after the end of the 1960 production and, over the years, over a dozen films about the Alamo have been shot there. In addition, over 100 other western movies as well as documentaries, music videos and commercials have been shot using various parts of the set. Frank Thompson, a film historian, noted that each production changed the set in some way, big or small, and that the changes appear in each new movie about the Alamo, documenting the current view of authenticity over time. The 2004 Disney movie about the Alamo was not shot on this set, but in a new set built in Dripping Springs, Texas.

After the filming of the 1960 version of The Alamo, the village has served primarily as a tourist attraction. For several decades, it served as a significant local employer and element of the economy of Brackettville. In addition to the replica of The Alamo, the village included a cantina and restaurant, a trading post, an Indian store, a church, a jail, a blacksmith shop, the John Wayne Western Museum, several museums, and a celebrity gallery. Alamo Village also maintained a collection of antique tools, vehicles and other period props, as well as a herd of longhorn cattle. During the summer, live music and stage shows performed frequently, and over Labor Day weekend the Labor Day Horse Races brought crowds to the village. Alamo Village was open to visitors year round except for December 21–26.

In 2004, the set was put up for sale by its owner, Virginia Shahan, Happy Shahan's widow, for $3.0 million. Virginia Shahan died on June 23, 2009 at the age of 93. Alamo Village was closed to the public while her estate evaluated the feasibility of the Village's continued operation in the midst of the late-2000s recession. Alamo Village temporarily re-opened after the death of owner Virginia Shahan but on September 28, 2009, Tulisha Shahan Wardlaw, Happy and Virginia's daughter, died at the age of 67. Alamo Village then closed its doors and removed its website, ending an era.

After an eight year closure, the site opened for a short time in late January 2018, possibly for the last time. The event was a liquidation sale of all of the props. A news item at the time indicated that the future of the site was undecided.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Trick roping is an entertainment or competitive art involving the spinning of a lasso, also known as a lariat or a rope. It is particularly associated with Wild West shows or Western arts in the United States.

The lasso is a well-known tool of American cowboys, who developed rope spinning and throwing skills in using lassos to catch animals. Cowboys developed various tricks to show off their prowess with the lasso and demonstrations of these tricks evolved into entertainment and competitive disciplines.

The well-established repertoire of tricks can be divided into three fundamental categories: "flat loop", "vertical loop", and "butterfly". In addition, thrown-loop tricks and tricks that involve the use of two ropes are used. Among the vertical loop tricks is the "Texas Skip", which involves the performer spinning the lasso in a wide loop in a vertical plane and jumping through the loop from one side to the other on each rotation.

Texas Jack Omohundro was the first performer to introduce roping acts to the American stage.
Texas Rose Bascom was of Cherokee Choctaw ancestry billed as the "Queen of the Trick Ropers," appeared in Hollywood movies, toured the world with the Bob Hope Troupe, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans, and Montie Montana, inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame.
Montie Montana had a 60-year career as a trick roper, and appeared in several John Wayne movies.
Actor and humorist Will Rogers, known for his roles as a cowboy, was an expert at trick roping. Rogers' rope tricks were showcased in the 1922 silent film The Ropin' Fool.
Vince Bruce (b. April 4, 1955, d. September 24, 2011) was internationally acclaimed as one of the best Western acts in the world; Bruce made his Broadway debut in 1991, in the Tony Award-winning musical The Will Rogers Follies — A Life in Revue. Appearing as the trick-roping star and portraying Rogers in this tribute to the cowboy and vaudeville star, Bruce remained with the show for two and a half years at New York’s Palace Theatre. For his act, he performed a spin with two ropes, a feat first devised 60 years earlier by Will Rogers himself. On July 21, 1991, at the Empire State Building, Vince set a new world record — 4,011 — for “Texas Skips”.
Flores LaDue (1883-1951) was the only cowgirl to claim three world championships for trick and fancy roping; Flores remained undefeated in the event. Flores and her husband, Guy Weadick, also a trick roper, organized and produced the first Calgary Stampede. Flores Ladue is reputed to have been the first trick roper to perform the Texas Skip.
Horse trainer Buck Brannaman began his career in a child trick roping act with his brother.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Pecos Bill is a fictional cowboy in stories set during American westward expansion into the Southwest of Texas, New Mexico, Southern California, and Arizona. These narratives were invented as short stories in a book by Edward S. O'Reilly in the early 20th century and are considered to be an early example of fakelore. Pecos Bill was a late addition to the "big man" idea of characters, such as Paul Bunyan or John Henry.

The first known stories were published in 1917 by Edward O'Reilly for "The Century Magazine," and collected and reprinted in 1923 in the book "Saga of Pecos Bill." O'Reilly claimed they were part of an oral tradition of tales told by cowboys during the westward expansion and settlement of the southwest, including Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. But American folklorist Richard M. Dorson found that O'Reilly invented the stories as "folklore", and that later writers either borrowed tales from O'Reilly, or added further adventures of their own invention to the cycle.

Edward O'Reilly co-authored a cartoon strip with cartoonist Jack A. Warren, also known as Alonzo Vincent Warren, between 1929 and 1938. When O'Reilly died in 1946, Warren began a strip titled "Pecos Pete". This was a story about "Pecos Bill", who had received a "lump on the naggan" that caused him amnesia. The cartoons originally were published in "The Sun" and were later syndicated. He also has a wife, named Slue-Foot Sue.

Pecos Bill made the leap to film in the 1948 Walt Disney animated feature Melody Time. He was portrayed by Steve Guttenberg in a 1985 episode of Tall Tales & Legends and by Patrick Swayze in Disney's 1995 film Tall Tale.

"Pecos Bill" was also the nickname of Civil War general William Shafter, although this was before O'Reilly created the legend. Shafter was considered a hero in Texas, and even had some legendary poetry written about how tough he was.

According to legend, Pecos Bill is responsible for creating many different landmarks. One landmark he is said to have created is the Gulf of Mexico. Apparently, there was a drought in Texas that was so horrible, that Pecos rushed to California and lassoed up a storm cloud and brought it to Texas. It rained so much that the Gulf of Mexico was created. Another story is of him creating the Rio Grande River. He and his horse got stranded in the desert and needed water. So Pecos grabbed a stick and dug the Rio Grande River. One other landmark that he is responsible for is the Painted Desert. He apparently started shooting at a tribe of aboriginal Americans, and as they ran away, the ritual paint they had on them came off and painted the desert.

According to the legend, Pecos Bill was born in Texas in the 1830s (or 1845 in some versions, the year of Texas's statehood). Pecos Bill's family decided to move out because his town was becoming "too crowded". Pecos Bill was traveling in a covered wagon as an infant when he fell out unnoticed by the rest of his family near the Pecos River (thus his nickname). He was taken in and raised by a pack of coyotes. Years later he was found by his real brother, who managed to convince him he was not a coyote.

He grew up to become a cowboy. Bill used a rattlesnake named Shake as a lasso and another snake as a little whip. His horse, Widow-Maker (also called Lightning), was so named because he was Texas's first and most notorious serial killer, leaving a trail of dead bodies clear across Texas (this is another version of how the Rio Grande was made). Dynamite was said to be his favorite food. It is also said Bill sometimes rode a cougar instead of a horse. On one of his adventures, Pecos Bill managed to lasso a twister. It was also said that he once wrestled the Bear Lake monster for several days until Bill finally defeated it.

Pecos Bill had a lover named Slue-Foot Sue, who rode a giant catfish down the Rio Grande. He was fishing with the pack when he saw her. Shake, Widow-Maker, and Slue-Foot Sue are as idealized as Pecos Bill.

After a courtship in which, among other things, Pecos Bill shoots all the stars from the sky except for one which becomes the Lone Star, Bill proposes to Sue. She insists on riding Widow-Maker before, during or after the wedding (depending on variations in the story). Widow-Maker, jealous of no longer having Bill's undivided attention, bounces Sue off; she lands on her bustle and begins bouncing higher and higher. Bill catches her, but then gets pulled with her. The town folks assumed both Bill and Sue were bounced away to another place or both ended up on the Moon where they stayed and were never seen again.

In Bowman's version of the story, Sue eventually recovers from the bouncing, but is so traumatized by the experience she never speaks to Pecos Bill ever again.

In few other versions, Bill attempts, but fails, to lasso her, because Widow-Maker did not want her on his back again, and she eventually hits her head on the moon. After she has been bouncing for days, Pecos Bill realizes that she would eventually starve to death, so he lassos her with Shake the rattlesnake and brings her back down to Earth. Widow-Maker, realizing that what he did to her was wrong, apologizes and was forgiven.

In other versions, Sue could not stop bouncing, and Bill could not stop her from bouncing either, so Bill had to shoot her to put her out of her misery. Though it is said that Bill was married many times, he never loved the others as much as Sue, and the other relationships did not work out.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Al Tietjen
Born:1928
Died:
Maker's Mark: "A TIETJEN RENO NEV" with date stamped as well
Al Tietjen was born in Winnemucca, Nevada but moved to Reno where he spent time at the ranch of his relatives the Millers ( Elmer Miller’s family ), Elmer and Al would move to San Francisco and start a partnership making bits and spurs that was Miller & Tietjen ( pieces are marked MILLER & TIETJEN ). After the Korean War, Al would work in Reno before opening his own bit and spur business. Tietjen’s bits and spurs are marked A. TIETJEN RENO, NEV with a month and year date code.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Carson Pass is a mountain pass on the crest of the central Sierra Nevada, in the Eldorado National Forest and Alpine County, eastern California.
The pass is traversed by California State Route 88. It lies on the Great Basin Divide, with the West Fork Carson River on the east and the South Fork American River on the west.

The historic pass was a point on the Carson Trail during the California Gold Rush and was used for American Civil War shipping to California until the completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad. The Pacific Crest Trail traverses the Carson Pass summit, which has California Historical Landmark #315 at CA 88 postmile 6.09 where Kit Carson carved his name into a tree.

The 1844 Frémont Expedition turned south from northern Nevada. When encamped at Nevada's Carson Valley on January 31, 1844, guide Kit Carson suggested the expedition detour west during the winter conditions to Sutter's Fort in California for supplies. Local Washoe Indians told them of a route through the mountains, but warned them not to proceed through the snow. Frémont duly ignored the advice and directed the group westward. The Washoe were right in that they were not able to find food or game, and they ended up resorting to eating dogs, horses, and mules just to survive. On February 14, Frémont and his cartographer Charles Preuss made it up Red Lake Peak and became the first recorded white men to see Lake Tahoe in the distance. On February 21, the expedition made it through the now-named Carson pass west of Red Lake and arrived at Sutter's Fort on March 6 with no fatalities.

In the summer of 1848, Mormons leaving California for Utah built what would become known as the Carson Trail across the Sierra from Sly Park, California to the Carson Valley via Carson Pass. The Carson Trail became one of the primary routes across the Sierra used by overland immigrants to California in the Gold Rush era. Brigham Young evacuated Mormon settlers around Carson Pass in July 1857, shortly after the breakout of the Utah War.

In 1850, the young Rachel Melton was buried west of Carson's Pass. Her family was traveling from Iowa when she became ill. The family camped out with a goal to improve Rachel's health, but she died. The site is a California Historical Landmark.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Vernon Begaye, raised on the Navajo Reservation, comes from a family of artists. His parents, Jimmy and Ella Begaye were silversmiths. His mother is also a traditional Navajo rug weaver. He and his brothers Marco and Jason learned the art of making jewelry when they were children. He experimented merging Navajo tradition with contemporary design, continually evolving as the years passed. Now, he is making exceptional jewelry in an abstract style all his own, that is instantly recognizable and highly prized. His individual vision sets him apart from tradition while retaining the cultural origins that inspired his talent.

The photo is of a silver bracelet with #8 turquoise and lapis.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Forgotten western movies: At Gunpoint is a 1955 American Western film directed by Alfred L. Werker and starring Fred MacMurray, Dorothy Malone and Walter Brennan.

Plainview is a peaceful town, all the better for bad men Alvin Dennis, his brother Bob, and their gang, to rob the bank there. They figure small-town sheriff Pete MacKay will not pose much of a problem.

MacKay is having his usual chess game with Doc Lacy at the general store Jack Wright runs with wife Martha and brother-in-law Wally. A gunshot from the bank startles all. Bob has shot a teller, then guns down the old marshal when he arrives. Jack is just a meek storekeeper, but he manages to grab a gun and wing the fleeing Alvin Dennis, who is then killed by another townsman, George Henderson. And the bank's loot is saved.

Everybody, particularly banker Livingston, appreciates the bravery of the town heroes. But when the Amarillo newspaper publishes their photographs, Bob Dennis decides to return to Plainview to avenge his brother's death. The grateful town throws a celebration for both Henderson and Jack. As a tipsy Henderson, who has been appointed the new sheriff, is riding back to his ranch after the party, he is ambushed and killed.

Jack could be next. A marshal comes to town to keep an eye on things, but can't stay forever and leaves after two uneventful weeks. Jack, his wife and son Billy, begin to notice that their neighbors are shunning them, no longer shopping at the store or even allowing their kids to come near them.

A $2,500 reward for Alvin Dennis's capture is a pleasant surprise for Jack, but when Wally is mistaken for him and murdered in cold blood by Bob Dennis, no one is willing to help. In fact, he is offered more money by Livingston and other frightened citizens if he will sell them the store and leave town. Doc and the Wrights are ashamed of everyone's lack of support in Jack's hour of need.

Jack arms himself to face Bob Dennis and his gang. He is outmatched, but suddenly the men in town, brandishing firearms, appear in windows and on the street, demanding the gang drop their guns and surrender. All but Bob give up and, as the outlaw approaches Jack, Doc manages to shoot him. The townspeople offer apologies to the Wrights, who are immediately willing to forgive and forget. Doc storms off, apparently not so willing.

Fred MacMurray as Jack Wright
Dorothy Malone as Martha
Walter Brennan as Doc
Skip Homeier as Bob Dennis
Tommy Rettig as Billy
John Qualen as Livingstone
Whit Bissell as Clem Clark
Jack Lambert as Kirk
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Bird Woman Falls is a 560 feet waterfall located immediately west of the continental divide in Glacier National Park, Montana, United States. The falls are readily visible from a distance of two miles along the Going-to-the-Sun Road, which bisects the park east to west. The falls are fed by snowfields and a remnant glacier located on the north and west flanks of Mount Oberlin. The falls flow is greatest in late spring and early summer and has been known to almost cease flowing in the autumn.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Great western character actors: James Murdock was born on June 22, 1931 in Bloomington, Illinois, USA as David Lee Baker. He was an actor, known for The Godfather: Part II (1974), Rawhide (1959) and Bob Hope Presents the Chrysler Theatre (1963). He was married to Betty. He died on December 24, 1981 in Los Angeles, California, USA.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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Gunlock State Park is a state park of Utah, USA, adjoining a 266-acre reservoir. The park is located approximately 15 miles northwest of St George. The reservoir dam was constructed in 1970 for irrigation water and flood control.

Gunlock State Park is a primitive area; there are facilities. The park offers camping, swimming, boating, and fishing. The park and reservoir are named after the nearby community of Gunlock. The town was named after William "Gunlock Will" Hamblin, its first settler. Hamblin was a Mormon pioneer born in Ohio who settled in the area in 1857. Gunlock Will was a good hunter and sharpshooter, and was skillful in repairing gunlocks, which are the firing mechanisms for muzzleloaders.

The county road to the park is the Old Spanish Trail used by horsemen and raiders from Santa Fe, New Mexico to Los Angeles, California from the 1820s until 1849, when the gold fields of California became the destination and a shorter route was taken.
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Re: Spurs and the Great West

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The historic Town of Fairplay is the Statutory Town that is the county seat and the most populous municipality of Park County, Colorado, United States. The town population was 724 at the 2020 United States Census. Fairplay is located in South Park at an elevation of 9,953 feet. The town is the fifth-highest incorporated place in the State of Colorado. Fairplay is now a part of the Denver–Aurora–Lakewood, CO Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Front Range Urban Corridor.

A historic gold mining settlement, the town was founded in 1859 during the early days of the Pike's Peak Gold Rush. The town was named by settlers who were upset by the generous mining claims given to the earliest prospectors and promised a more equitable system for its residents. The town of Fairplay was incorporated in 1872.

It is the largest community in the grassland basin of Colorado known as South Park, sitting on the west edge of the basin at the junction of U.S. Highway 285 and State Highway 9. It is on a hillside just east of the Middle Fork South Platte River, near where Highway 9 ascends the river valley northward to Alma and Hoosier Pass. It is a quiet town, and the roads surrounding it have a low volume of traffic. Although it was founded during the initial placer mining boom, the mines in the area continued to produce gold and silver ore for many decades up through the middle of the 20th century.

The town consists of modern retail businesses along the highway, as well as a historic town on the bluff above the river along Front Street. The northern extension of Front Street along the river has been preserved and has become the site of relocated historic structures as an open-air museum called South Park City, intended to recreate the early days of the Colorado Gold Rush. Most of the residences in town are located on the hillside west of US Highway 285 and east of State Highway 9, in the vicinity of the schools and Park County Courthouse. The majority of the streets in town were finally paved in 2005.

In 1874, the Presbyterian missionary Sheldon Jackson built in Fairplay the still-standing Sheldon Jackson Memorial Chapel, since renamed the South Park Community Church, a one-room Victorian Gothic Revival structure which was listed in 1977 on the National Register of Historic Places.
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