Nestled in the San Juan Mountains of southwestern Colorado, lies the historic town of Creede – a once-thriving mining camp that has since transformed into a ghost town, frozen in time. The town’s fascinating past is steeped in the discovery of precious minerals such as gold, silver, and zinc, which led to a rush of prospectors in the late 19th century.
Today, visitors can explore the remnants of this boomtown, including original buildings, mines, and landmarks, and discover the captivating history that shaped this unique destination.
As you walk through the streets of Creede, it’s hard not to be transported back in time to the days of the Wild West. The town has a rich legacy of notable figures, including Bob Ford, the man who famously shot and killed Jesse James.
But Creede’s history is more than just a footnote in the story of the American West. It’s a tale of perseverance, ingenuity, and the human spirit’s indomitable nature.
In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into the history of Creede, exploring its origins, notable figures, and must-see sights. Join us on a journey through time as we discover the history of Colorado’s ghost town – Creede.
- Creede was a thriving mining camp that has transformed into a ghost town.
- The town’s past is steeped in the discovery of precious minerals such as gold, silver, and zinc, and it quickly grew into a booming mining town.
- Many original buildings from the early mining operations are still standing today, including the old saloon operated by Bob Ford.
- Visitors can explore the remnants of this boomtown, including original buildings, mines, and landmarks such as the Creede Underground Mining Museum.
Discovery of Creede
Creede, located in Mineral County, was discovered in 1889 by Nicholas J. Creede. At the time, it quickly became a wild mining camp for gold, silver, and zinc, with silver dominant ore.
Many original buildings from the early mining operations still stand today, giving visitors a glimpse of the town’s past.
Nicholas J. Creede’s town discovery sparked a mining frenzy in the area. The town was named after him and quickly grew into a booming mining town.
The early mining operations in Creede were focused on silver, and this helped the town become one of the largest silver producers in Colorado.
Today, Creede is known as a ghost town, but it remains an important historical site that provides a unique insight into the state’s mining history.
Notable Figures in Creede
One of the individuals who left their mark on the mining town was a well-known Missouri outlaw, who was infamously shot and killed by Bob Ford. This outlaw was none other than Jesse James, a notorious desperado who terrorized the Midwest during the late 1800s.
Ford, a James gang member, shot him in the back of the head while he was adjusting a picture on his wall. The motive for Ford’s actions remains unclear, but some speculate that he may have done it for the reward money or to clear his own name.
Regardless of the reason, James’ legacy lived on, and his death only added to the romanticized image of the Wild West.
Bob Ford’s impact on Creede was equally significant. After killing James, he fled to Colorado and settled in Creede. He built and operated a successful saloon there, attracting many miners and gamblers.
However, his time in Creede was short-lived, as he was shot and killed by a miner named Edward O’Kelley in 1892. Ford’s death marked the end of an era, and his name became synonymous with betrayal and violence.
Despite the controversy surrounding his actions, Bob Ford remains an important figure in the history of Creede, and his story continues to captivate those who are interested in the Wild West.
Sights and Miscellaneous
The Holy Moses Mine and the mill on the side of the cliff are two of the most notable sights in Creede, Colorado. The Holy Moses Mine was discovered by the town’s namesake, Nicholas J. Creede, and was one of the richest silver mines in the area. The mine is now abandoned, but visitors can explore the tunnels and view the old mining equipment left behind.
The mill on the side of the cliff, also known as the Creede Underground Mining Museum, is a unique attraction that allows visitors to descend into the old mining tunnels and learn about the history of the town’s mining industry.
In addition to exploring the abandoned buildings and mining sites, visitors to Creede can also indulge in the town’s spooky history and ghost stories. Many of the original buildings in Creede still stand, including the old saloon that was operated by Bob Ford, the man who shot and killed Jesse James.
Rumors of hauntings and paranormal activity surround many of these old buildings, adding an eerie element to the town’s history. For those interested in the supernatural, Creede offers a unique opportunity to explore the past and possibly encounter some ghostly activity.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the current population of Creede?
Creede, a former mining town in Mineral County, Colorado, is now a ghost town with a dwindling population. According to recent population statistics and demographic trends, the current population of Creede is estimated to be less than 300 people.
Was Creede ever involved in any major conflicts or wars?
Creede was not involved in any major conflicts or wars, but the Civil War impacted its mining industry. The high demand for metals during the war led to increased mining activity in the area, particularly for silver.
What is the closest city to Creede and how far away is it?
The closest city to Creede is Alamosa, located approximately 93 miles to the east. Exploring nearby attractions, visitors can enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and camping in the Rio Grande National Forest.
Are there any annual events or festivals held in Creede?
Local traditions and cultural celebrations are held annually in Creede. The town hosts the Creede Chocolate Festival, Independence Day Parade, and Labor Day weekend celebrations. These events attract visitors to experience the town’s unique history and charm.
Has Creede ever been featured in any movies or TV shows?
Creede’s impact on tourism has been enhanced by its appearance in popular culture. The town was featured in the film “Vanishing Point” and the TV series “The Lone Ranger”. The Holy Moses Mine and the mill on the side of a cliff are famous landmarks in Creede.