Quail first introduced to this area in 1890s
When I am driving around in the country, it is always a pleasure to see a mama quail leading her babies along the way. I had assumed all these years — and we all know that you should never do that — that quail were indigenous to our area. I was wrong. Fellow researcher Marie Tipping found this tidbit in the March 5, 1892, Grand Junction News:
“Some time ago, The News published the fact that Mr. N.J. Krusen had received a covey of nine quails. These quails he has turned loose on the river bottom, and he desires to request sportsmen not to shoot them. It seems superfluous to make this request. These are the first, and so far, the only quails in the county. It is hoped and fully believed that there is no one so unfeeling as to shoot any of these rare birds.”
In January of 1893, W.B. Lesher asked the Mesa County commissioners for money to purchase 1,000 quail to help with insect control, especially grasshoppers.
After he purchased the quail he then distributed them all over the county.
The writer of the news item explains that for the protection of the quail there was a law passed making it a crime to shoot a quail and added that there was an extremely stiff monetary penalty for those who killed a quail and got caught.
When I wrote about the Mile-A-Way dance hall last summer, I didn’t have a picture. A few weeks ago I found this one. I am running it now, as I think some folks might enjoy seeing it.
A few weeks ago I wrote about the Mesa Clinic Group, which became Mesa Memorial Hospital, I couldn’t find a picture for that, either.
However, my husband, Teddy, did find this ad with a picture in a 1909 Daily Sentinel and it was called the Grand Junction Hospital.
Years ago when the then-United States Bank at the corner of Fourth and Main streets was bulldozed to make room for a new building, I was saddened at the loss of a great piece of architecture. The site is now occupied by Wells Fargo Bank.
While I was reading a Feb. 6, 1892, Grand Junction News, a drawing of the building caught my eye.
When it was built in 1892, it was known as the Mesa County Bank block. The bank door was at the corner of the building, fronting on both Main and Fourth streets.
The bank occupied the first floor corner of the building. Other rooms on the main floor and the second floor were dedicated to offices.
The building was made of brick and trimmed with cut stone at a cost of $30,000. The beautiful stone, arched front door frame, now located in the parking lot behind the bank, is all that remains of the building that in 1892 was said to be “more evidence of the fact that the day of shacks in Grand Junction is at an end.”
Kathy Jordan is retired from The Daily Sentinel. She is involved in many local preservation efforts and is on the board of directors for Colorado Preservation Inc.