Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future

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9782746833340: Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future
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Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future tells the story of a town founded by the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad. The narrow gauge railway extension, connecting the towns of Durango and Silverton, has endured for over a century. At its inception, the railway was built to carry supplies up to the miners working in the San Juan Mining District. On its return, the railway carried ore for the smelters in Durango to process. Durango became known as the Denver of the Southwest, thanks to its boosters and businessmen who carefully guided Durango's growth and economic opportunities. Residents of Durango have always believed that their Golden Future would be attainable. Otto Mears astounded the world with his narrow-gauge mountain railroading, connecting Ridgway and Durango with the Rio Grande Southern line. The Silverton Northern, the Gladstone and Northerly, and the Silverton Railroad, also owned and built by Mears, were feeder lines that went up to the mining camps beyond Silverton. Photographer William Henry Jackson traveled the narrow gauge train lines, both the Denver & Rio Grande and the Rio Grande Southern, in a special car built for his equipment and darkroom. He prepared many promotional photographs for the railroads. He is an important player in the history of Durango, Silverton, and the narrow gauge railway systems that crossed southwestern Colorado. For over 130 years, the narrow gauge line traveling between Durango and Silverton stubbornly hung on. This forty-five mile extension of the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad declared as a Registered Historical Landmark by the National Park Service, is known today as the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. An eclectic assortment of graphics including antique prints, historical photos, old paper memorabilia, paintings, maps, and vintage postcards illustrate the history of Durango, Silverton, and the network of railways that connected the San Juan Basin. An extra: Inside you will find 18 postcards to pull out, send to friends, or share with family. They will help you to remember Durango, Silverton, and the narrow gauge railroad that connects these two towns.

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About the Author:

Susan Dalton is a resident of Telluride, Colorado. Originally born in Michigan from Finnish and German ancestors, she has snow running through her veins and is an avid downhill and cross-country skier. She appreciates history and lives in one of the old, historic Victorian houses that line the Main Street of Telluride. Her collaboration with the French publishing company of Editions du Signe is a result of her effort to unite Telluride with Megeve, France, a ski resort in the French Alps, as sister cities. Susan graduated from Denison University in Granville, Ohio, as a French major and she enjoys traveling in France. Her first book, Telluride: A Silver Past, A Golden Future, tells the story of the transformation of a pure and pristine valley into a 21st century resort destination. An eclectic assortment of graphics including antique prints, historical photos,old paper memorabilia, paintings, and vintage postcards illustrate this metamorphosis. The author's plans are to continue creating a series of books about iconic Colorado towns that have a Silver Past, and look forward to a Golden Future. Her design format is unique, combining graphics with a concise history. These books are table-top souvenir memoirs for visitors.

Review:

Between The Covers: Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future" Susan Viebrock. December 25, 2015. From age 12 until 99, William Henry Jackson was, ahem, focused on photography. After a tour of duty in the Civil War, Jackson headed West, eventually settling in Omaha, Nebraska, where he opened a portrait photography studio with his brother Edward. But staged images of predictable subjects proved not to be his thing. Photographer William Henry Jackson featured in Durango: A Silver Poast, A Golden Future, by Susan Dalton. Portrait photography never had any charms for me, so I sought my subjects from the house-tops, and finally from the hill-tops and about the surrounding country; the taste strengthening as my successes became greater in proportion to the failures, Jackson wrote. In 1870, Jackson accompanied geologist Ferdinand Vandiveer Hayden on an expedition across Wyoming, along the Green River, and eventually into the Yellowstone Lake region. His were the first published photographs of Yellowstone. Partly on the strength of that work, in March 1872, the area became America s first national park. On one of several independent expeditions that he headed, Jackson also became the first to photograph prehistoric Native American dwellings in Mesa Verde, Colorado. He finally settled in Denver, where he worked as a commercial landscape photographer and continued to publish his photographs as postcards. William Henry Jackson s story is a chapter in the second book of a series conceived by Susan Dalton that takes an unblinkered look at the colorful history of America s Southwest. The first book was a valentine to the author s home: Telluride: A Silver Past, A Golden Future. The second coffee table work wanders down the road a piece to the nearby town once known as the Denver of the Southwest, Durango. Like the Telluride book, Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future is as rich as the history that unfolds in its pages, an opulent confection of words and images, including antique prints, historical photos, old paper memorabilia, paintings, maps, and vintage postcards, that conspire to tell the colorful tale of Durango, Silverton, and the network of railways that connected the San Juan Basin. Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future, includes 18 postcards to pull out, send to friends, or share with your family. Shortly after its publication in November, the town of Durango purchased 200 copies of Durango: A Silver Past, A Golden Future to give as gifts and use for promotional purposes. The narrow gauge railway connecting the towns of Durango and Silverton has endured for over a century. At its inception, the railway was built to carry supplies up to the miners working in the San Juan Mining District. On its return, it carried ore for the smelters in Durango to process. Durango began as a support center for the San Juan mining district; the narrow gauge train provided the essential link. Due to its enviable position on the Animas River and its natural resources of coal and fertile land, Durango developed effortlessly as a center for agriculture, mining, and the regional government. The discovery of ancient Pueblo cliff dwellings in Mancos Canyon made residents of Durango aware of the possibilities for tourism as far back as the late 1800s. Residents of Durango have always believed in their Golden Future. --telluride inside and out -online news

Durango's history retold through pictures by Mary Shinn A new book on the history of Durango tells of the town's intimate relationship with regional railroads through historic photos, antique prints and maps. Durango: A Silver Past, a Golden Future is not designed to resemble the dry textbook that you fell asleep reading during school: instead it's a punchy retelling of the region's history from its native inhabitants through modern day. Readers will come away with insight into how the city boomed with smelters processing mining ore and how the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad survived the rise of automobiles, author Susan Dalton promises. The book on Durango is her second project, following a similar book on Telluride. She picked Durango for her next project because of the warm welcome she received, she writes in the forward of the book. I think that this spirit of welcome is an example of long-engrained Durango hospitality and community confidence, she wrote. the book was released Tuesday and Dalton will be in town for a book-signing from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday at Maria's Bookshop. --the Durango Herald 12/03/2015

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