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Charles Moore discusses his career in the U.S. Grazing Service, ranching, and tension between sheep and cattle ranchers on Colorado's Western Slope. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration of Mesa County Libraries and the Museums of Western Colorado.
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Carl Forsman, the son of Swedish immigrants, talks about early life in the town of Mesa, Colorado. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration of Mesa County Libraries, the Museums of Western Colorado and the Mesa County Historical Society.
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Oscar Jaynes discusses childhood memories of Clifton, Colorado, including life on his family’s homestead, a time he climbed inside a giant tire and rolled down a desert hill, and a boxing match at school with future Colorado Supreme Court justice Jim Groves. He then relates tales of traveling the country on freight cars trying to find work during the Great Depression. Oscar also talks a great deal about the fruit business, specifically the peach...
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Harry Sylvester Godby discusses his time spent working for and traveling with the Robinson Brothers Circus before moving to Grand Junction, Colorado. Harry also talks about his itinerant childhood moving from place to place, and the wide variety of jobs he worked throughout his life, including construction, mining, blacksmithing and potato farming, and how he was affected by the Great Depression. He shares his discovery of a large pile of boxes with...
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Virgil Hickman and his wife discuss their lives growing up around Mesa County. Virgil’s grandfather began as a miner in Palisade and Cameo, Colorado, and his family turned to fruit farming. Hickman describes planting the first fruit orchard on East Orchard Mesa, the labor involved with peach growing, and the development of the area. He touches on the businesses, social scene, and Christmas celebrations in Palisade during the early 1900s. The interview...
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Early Mesa County resident Virgil Hickman discusses farm life in Palisade and East Orchard Mesa, including irrigation ditches and dams, water rights of farmers and ranchers, hunting deer during the Great Depression, the methods used in keeping peach orchards bug-free, weekly band concerts, making apple butter, and the Palisade Peach Festival. He also talks about building Skyway Road on the Grand Mesa with picks, blasting powder and horses. This recording...
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Dorothy Ottman discusses her childhood in Grand Junction, fruit growing and agricultural industry in Mesa County, and the social life and customs of women, youth, and others in the Grand Junction area. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration of Mesa County Libraries and the Museums of Western Colorado.
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To mark the centennial celebration of the town of Grand Junction, Colorado in 1981, the Mesa County Oral History Project wrote and recorded several radio plays about local history. Beginning on September 26, 1981, local radio stations KSTR, KREX-AM, KREX-FM, and KMSA broadcast the plays. Authors of the plays used interviews recorded by the Mesa County Oral History Project as inspiration. This archival recording contains the play A Natural Resource:...
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Thelma Moore talks about her youth on a fruit farm in Pear Park, life in early Grand Junction, her involvement in 4-H clubs, the Locust Ranch fruit growing operation in Clifton, and the other members of the Kettle family to settle in that area. She discusses her career as a seamstress and work making drapes, county extension work with quilters, craft competitions at the Mesa County Fair, and chautauquas and variety shows. She also goes into her life...
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Mary talks about her early childhood in Kansas as one of nine children and her family's move to Colorado upon the death of her father. Mary details the train and its passengers during the move, including Russian immigrants coming to work the beet fields, and her mother's outreach. She mentions her mothers career training riding horses as a way to support the family. She talks about her relationships, children, and the struggle she faced trying to...
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Mary Plaisted talks about early days in Mesa County, Colorado, her marriage to Thomas Pierce, a farmer in Loma, and the busy life of a homemaker on the farm. She discusses various locations and institutions around the Western Slope, including the Paradox Valley, the Cowpuncher’s Reunion, and the Little Book Cliff Railway. She speaks about her warm family life as a child in Kansas, and life in Western Colorado after her father’s death. She also...
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Arvid Muhr talks about his family of Swedish Immigrants, about peach farming on East Orchard Mesa in Mesa County, and about the development of irrigation water in the Grand Valley. Mr. Muhr also discusses the Teller Institute baseball team, made up of American Indians that attended the school, and about working on a hydroelectric dam near Palisade. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration of Mesa County...
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Frieda Miller talks about her pioneer ranching family’s arrival in Palisade, Colorado, and about the exploits of her colorful father, Eben “Mac” Miller. She speaks about her school days in Palisade and Grand Junction, and about childhood games she played (such as Duck on a Rock). She discusses her later life and marriage with farmer and carpenter George Weaver, and her long period as a vegetarian. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County...
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Early Mesa County resident Fred Hulburt discusses his job as a postman, the difficulties of starting a fruit farming business, his views on the treatment of the Utes in the area, building tunnels for the Highline Canal above Cameo, methods used to prevent the codling moth from ruining fruit orchards, and how to properly break wild horses and mules. This recording is made available via signed release by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration...
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Tom Charles talks about moving to the Fruitvale area of Mesa County, Colorado in 1907, his family’s fruit orchards, and the history of fruit growing in the Grand Valley. Emma (Berg) Nagel describes her family’s homestead in the Highpoint area north of Fruita in 1894. She speaks about living in a dugout for three years, clearing the land for cultivation, and the family’s fruit orchard. Charles and Nagel both discuss the various crops grown around...
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Ruth Echternach talks about her arrival in Palisade, Colorado in 1917 and her graduation from the Palisade School. She discusses the history of early Palisade and its people. She speaks about her marriage to local farmer Marion Echternach, life on a fruit farm, and raising children. The interview was conducted by the Mesa County Oral History Project, a collaboration of Mesa County Libraries and the Museums of Western Colorado.
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Gertrude Rader discusses her time spent teaching in Loma, Colorado in the early 1900s. She talks about the role of the sugar beet company as landowner and employer in the area. She includes details about the schools, businesses, and churches that existed in Loma, her involvement starting Mesa County’s first hot school lunch program, and her experiences attending an annual fish fry in Horsethief Canyon. Gertrude also shares memories about the many...