1) Salida was first named “South Arkansas” when the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad reached the area in May 1880. It was renamed Salida to represent the exit or gateway to the Arkansas River canyon that passengers would see coming to or leaving Salida and by June 1880 had grown to 300 people.
2) Downtown Salida burned twice, once in 1886 and again in 1888. Both times, burned out businessmen rebuilt using local brick, leading to the beautiful brick buildings you see in downtown today. The Salida Downtown Historic District, spanning 111 buildings, was listed on the National Historic Register on June 14, 1984.
3) Presidents Theodore Roosevelt, Howard Taft, Harry Truman and Franklin Delano Roosevelt all came through Salida. Ulysses Grant came through the area after he was president. Teddie Roosevelt gave a speech on May 12, 1905 after vacationing in Colorado while president. He acknowledged the veterans, railroad workers and schoolchildren (some 800 strong) who came to greet him, and ended by saying, “I wish I could stay with you a week.”
4) The first FIBArk (First in Boating the Arkansas Klub) race was held June 19, 1949. The first downriver rice followed a 56-mile course through the Royal Gorge to Canon City. The waters ran high, labeled “whitewater hell” by competitors, and only one team finished the race. The winners deemed it more of a test of endurance than skill, and the next year the race was shortened to 45 miles, ending in Parkdale. In 1951, the race was further shortened to 26 miles, ending in Cotopaxi, where it ends today.
1) “Beulah red” is the name of the red marble that gives the Colorado State Capitol its distinctive splendor. Cutting, polishing, and installing the marble in the Capitol took six years, from 1894 to 1900. All of the “Beulah red” marble in the world went into the Capitol. It cannot be replaced, at any price.
2) Colorado is the only state in history, to turn down the Olympics. In 1976 the Winter Olympics were planned to be held in Denver. 62% of all state Voters choose at almost the last minute not to host the Olympics, because of the cost, pollution and population boom it would have on the State Of Colorado, and the City of Denver.
3) The United States Air Force Academy is located in Colorado Springs.
4) The world’s largest flat-top mountain is in Grand Mesa.
5) Denver, lays claim to the invention of the cheeseburger. The trademark for the name Cheeseburger was awarded in 1935 to Louis Ballast.
6) The highest paved road in North America is the Road to Mt. Evans off of I-70 from Idaho Springs. The Road climbs up to 14,258 Ft. above sea level.
7) The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad continues to provide year round train service operating a historical train with rolling stock indigenous to the line. The line was constructed primarily to haul mine ores, both gold and silver, from the San Juan Mountains.
8) The United States federal government owns more than 1/3 of the land in Colorado.
9) Colorado contains 75% of the land area of the U.S. with an altitude over 10,000 feet.
10) Colorado has 222 state wildlife areas.
11) Colfax Avenue in Denver is the longest continuous street in America.
12) The 13th step of the state capital building in Denver is exactly 1 mile high above sea level.
13) At 14,110 feet above sea level over 400,000 people ascend Pikes Peak each year.
14) The aptly named town of Twin Lakes lays adjacent two natural lakes at the foot of Colorado’s highest Fourteener, Mt. Elbert.
15) The Colorado Rockies are part of the North American Cordillera, which stretches 3,000 miles from Alaska, through western Canada and the United States, into northern Mexico. The centerpieces of this dramatic uplift are the peaks over 14,000 feet, or “Fourteeners”, as they are affectionately referred to by climbers. There are 52 Fourteeners in Colorado.
16) Rocky Ford has been dubbed the “melon capital of the world.”
17) The Yampa River below the northwest town of Craig holds northern pike in the 20-pound range, while the Roaring Fork and Frying Pan rivers are prime spots for trout fishing.
18) Colorado has the highest mean altitude of all the states.
19) Mesa Verde features an elaborate four-story city carved in the cliffs by the Ancestral Pueblo people between 600 and 1300 A.D. The mystery surrounding this ancient cultural landmark is the sudden disappearance of the thousands of inhabitants who created the more than 4,000 identified structures.
20) Colorado has more microbreweries per capita than any other state.
21) The Dwight Eisenhower Memorial Tunnel between Clear Creek & Summit counties is the highest auto tunnel in the world. Bored at an elevation of 11,000 feet under the Continental Divide it is 8,960 feet long and the average daily traffic exceeds 26,000 vehicles.
22) Leadville is the highest incorporated city in the United States at 10,430 feet elevation. Because there was lots of “silver” named towns at the time, the founding fathers suggested Leadville.
23) Katherine Lee Bates wrote “America the Beautiful” after being inspired by the view from Pikes Peak.
24) Hundreds of thousands of valentines are re-mailed each year from Loveland.
25) Fountain, has the distinction of being the United States’ millennium city because it best symbolizes the overall composition of America. Fountain is the most accurate representation of the American “melting pot.” Fountain was chosen after a Queens College sociologist crunched Census Bureau statistics in an effort to find the one city in the country that best represented the population make-up of the United States.
26) Pueblo is the only city in America with four living recipients of the Medal of Honor.
27) The tallest building in Colorado is the Republic Plaza at 57 stories high, in Denver.
28) Every year Denver host the worlds largest Rodeo, the Western Stock show.
29) Denver has the largest city park system in the nation with 205 parks in City limits and 20,000 Acres of parks in the nearby mountains.
30) Dove Creek is the “Pinto Bean” capital of the world.
31) The tallest sand dune in America is in Great Sand Dunes National Monument outside of Alamosa. This bizarre 46,000-acre landscape of 700-foot sand peaks was the creation of ocean waters and wind more than one million years ago.
32) The World’s First Rodeo was held on July 4th, 1869 in Deer Trail.
33) Colorado’s southwest corner borders Arizona, New Mexico and Utah the only place in America where the corners of four states meet.
34) Colorado’s first and oldest military post, Fort Garland was established in 1858 and commanded by the
legendary frontiersman Kit Carson.
35) Lieutenant Zebulon Montgomery Pike explored the southwest portion of the Louisiana Territory in 1806 and though he never climbed the peak that bears his name, he did publish a report that attracted a lot of interest to the area.
36) Colorado’s southwest corner borders Arizona, New Mexico and Utah the only place in America where the corners of four states meet.
37) There are nearly 20 rivers whose headwaters begin in Colorado, with the Continental Divide directing each river’s course.
37) The world’s largest natural hot springs pool located in Glenwood Springs. The two-block long pool is across the street from the historic Hotel Colorado, a favorite stop of former president Teddy Roosevelt.
38) On February 28, 1861, when Colorado Territory was created, the present boundaries were established and have remained unchanged to the present time.
39) Women received the right to vote in 1893
40) 1st U.S. gold and silver coins minted at the Denver Mint in 1906
41) Rocky Mountain National Park designation in 1915
42) The aptly named town of Twin Lakes lays adjacent to two natural lakes at the foot of Colorado’s highest fourteener, Mt. Elbert.
43) Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument near Cripple Creek is a lesson in history set in the one-time shadow of the Guffey Volcano. The Volcano erupted millions of years ago, creating fossils and leaving the valley filled with the petrified trees.
44) John Henry “Doc” Holliday’s brief and tumultuous existence led him to Glenwood Springs where he succumbed to tuberculosis and died at the Hotel Glenwood on November 8, 1887.
45) Built in 1867 by Seth Lake, the Astor House in Golden was the first stone hotel built west of the Mississippi River.