Saturday, October 11, 2014

Sightseeing Saturday: Walking Durango

As most of you know, walking is my favorite form of exercise.  So I was quite happy when I came across this great little book while in Durango, Colorado over the summer.
While the boys stayed in the hotel room watching the World Cup, I headed out to discover Durango's historical downtown on foot.
Durango, Colorado was incorporated as a town in 1881.
Walking Durango takes you on a sort of scavenger hunt through two National Historic Districts.  By finding pictured items, which are your clues, you are then given facts and stories about the sights around it.

This imprint in the sidewalk was a clue.
The Palace Hotel no longer exists but the imprinted sidewalk still bears the name of the historic business.  Some of the second story rooms were refurbished and are used by the General Palmer Hotel.
Originally built as the Savoy Hotel in 1898, this structure was then a drug store, grocery store, and a saloon.  The General Palmer Hotel has occupied the site since 1964.  It was named after General William Jackson Palmer who was the founder of the Denver & Rio Grande Railway Company which reached Durango in 1881.

The railroad played a major role in the design of early Durango which was laid out much as it is seen today.
Other historic sites along the way...

The Adolph Coors Company, a branch of the original Coors Brewery in Golden, Colorado, was in business until the State of Colorado outlawed the manufacture and distribution of alcoholic beverages in 1916.  It then became a soft drink company and its name was changed to Durango Bottling Works.
 Originally built as a men's clothing store, by 1900, this property had become the Palace Grocery and Meat Market.  The business changed hands twice but remained a grocery store into the late 1940's.
 The Amy Mansion was built in 1888 by Ernest Amy to lure his wife to come west to Durango.  It remained a private home until 1932 when it was purchased and turned into a mortuary.

 It was built to resemble popular seaside resort mansions in the northeast and cost $50,000 to build which was at least 20 times what the average Durango home cost in the 1880's.
 Although substantially altered from its original build, the Bayles/Wigglesworth House is still one of the oldest buildings in Durango,  It dates from 1882 and survived the fire of 1889.
 Before automobiles, upping stones were used to help horse riders or carriage passengers mount or dismount.  The one below is engraved with the family name.
Durango is a lovely little town filled with history.

I hope you enjoyed walking with me.
Best wishes and blessings,


Claudia said...

Love these photos of Durango, Tammy. I've never been there and it looks full of fascinating history.


kathyinozarks said...

I really enjoyed the walk and the history-thank you

Blondie's Journal said...

What a neat town! It has a lot of history.

I hope you are enjoying cooler temps!

Jane xx

Tanya @ Bead and Needle said...

LOVE Durango, and haven't been in years (it's amazing how you overlook little spots in your home state!) - looks like I need to take a little trip to town. Fabulous post, Tammy - Happy Saturday...or Sunday, as it may be in your neck of the woods! XOXO

Teresa Kasner said...

Tammy.. thanks for the tour.. I'd love to go there, it's so classically American West! I also love that it looks like it hasn't gone all McD's and Walmart.
((hugs)), Teresa :-)

Sam I Am...... said...

I loved that historic tour! Thank you! It was like reading a good book...with pictures.

Betsy said...

I really enjoyed the walk with you today. Western towns history fascinates me for some reason. The upping stone is great. I had never heard it called thatt before. Thanks for taking us along.

Susan said...

I liked your walk better than the real thing, Tammy.

Can't say I've ever been to Durango. Maybe in the future....

Hope your weekend is good. Susan

summersundays-jw said...

Love the pictures.....think I want to go to Durango!

Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder said...

Dearest Tammy,
Lovely tour with you as an excellent history guide. Both of us love to walk; only walk and also be outside!
Love that upping stone; how clever for mounting a horse or stepping outside of a carriage.
First time ever I saw one or read about it.
Our best friend, a former Colonel, would ask each day we traveled together in Italy: 'So what did we learn today?' A day could not be called fruitful if we had not learned something about history or seen something for the first time etc. And that is so true. It always makes for sweet dreams; being tired enough for a good night sleep and dreaming about new found treasures and better understanding things.

Kit said...

What a wonderful tour! It has been a long time since I have been to Colorado. Thanjs! Kit

Alessandra Poggiagliolmi said...

so interesting !!!!!
thank you, xxxxxx Ale

Life of Elna said...

What a nice place and great pictures.


Kit said...

Hi Tammy! Yes, it is in Greeley! Our family loves Colorado. We lived in Denver (Wheatridge) for 5 years and got hooked. It should be really pretty right about now with the Aspens turning. Tell your son to go and see them. :) My girls loved! the clean-up. It is all they can talk about. My youngest wants me to come and do the rest of the house....LOL Have a great week! Kit

Mereknits said...

The World Cup was exciting but I would have been out with you.

Vicki Boster said...

Dearest Tammy-- what a wonderful and interesting walking tour! Like you-I enjoy getting out to see the sights when we travel. That book was the perfect guide for your lovely walk!

We've been away on travels-- I'm happy now to be able to step into your world and spend some time with you:)

Amy at love made my home said...

What a lovely walk, and how great to get out and about and explore a bit! xx

Dagmar said...

Hi Tammy,
Your photos and narrative had me walking along beside you, thank you for showing us such an interesting town!

Liz D said...

What an interseting historic town! Doesn t look at all like the dusty mud-streeted town of cowboy movie fame.


barbara judge said...

Well I certainly learned something -- the name upping stones. I have seen them in my travels -- knew they were used with horses -- but didn't know that they were called upping stones. Always like to find out such information about the vernacular part of our history. Nice photos of historic Durango. -- barbara

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

I sure did enjoy walking with you... I would have enjoyed it even more had it been with you in Durango... you know how I love historic districts. ;)

I've been thinking about cutting my hair short lately... and Evan cringes every time! LOL! WHY they like long hair I'll never know. ;)Sounds like you have some proponents of long, too. =) blessings ~ tanna

Rostrose said...

Dearest Tammy,
Durango looks really adorable and interesting! Some of the houses remind me a bit of the buildings that we saw in Flagstaff on Route 66:
It might be a pity that the Palace Hotel no longer exists - perhaps it was just as aesthetically as the General Palmer Hotel?
Certainly it's the best to explore this city by walking, so you can discover the remoter places...
Warm hugs, my dear - and keep on walking :o))

kathy b said...

Durango look so interesting! I want to visit someday

Createology said...

Walking is such a great way to see things and stay active at the same time. Your tour of Durango Colorado is wonderful and I feel like I have gotten to enjoy it with you. Creative Walking Bliss...

Patty Antle said...

I love it when places offer walking tours like that. I enjoyed walking with you Tammy! What a neat place and I love all of the history about it.

Helen Philipps said...

Thank you for taking us along on this lovely walk, Tammy! Durango Colorado looks like such an interesting place, so filled with history and wonderful buildings.
Happy weekend.
Helen xox

Quinn said...

I've been to Durango only once, many years ago, and it was at night - so this lovely tour was all new to me!
One of my good friends here in MA goes to Durango every year or so, for holiday trailriding (horses) - she just loves the area. Now I'll ask her if she ever gets off the horse long enough to walk through the town ;)

Lisa said...

Thank you. This post really makes me want to visit Durango now. :)

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