Sunday, August 2, 2009

Black Cat, Cliff House, Glen Eyrie, and more

Spent some time in Colorado Springs and Manitou, gleaning bits and pieces of history with the help, enthusiasm and expertise of many folks (too many to enumerate right now, but they are on my "thank you" list!).

In addition to a wonderful event at Black Cat Books (photo left to right: historical reenactor Doris McCraw, me, Dani Greer of Blood Red Pencil and Blog Book Tours, and author Cynthia Becker), I spent two nights in the Cliff House, and a night at Glen Eyrie (the home of General William Jackson Palmer, a name familiar to railroad and Civil War enthusiasts as well as folks who've read Iron Ties).


The Cliff House, which originally got started in 1873, became one of "the" places to stay in the 1880s and beyond for folks "chasing the cure" for tuberculosis. It's a wonderful place, with a big, wide porch ... one can almost picture the gentlemen and ladies promenading around. For some reason, I didn't take any pictures of the Cliff House (too much running about, I guess), so I'll have to rely on memory and internet for that.

Glen Eyrie is currently owned by The Navigators, but is open to the public for overnight accommodations, hiking, etc., with reservations. Again, a lovely building. The iconic stone structure was, alas, not around in 1880 (the timeframe for book #4), but its predecessor, a 22-room frame house, did exist. I got some photos here ... I love staircases; this is the staircase leading up to the second floor and the bedroom where I stayed overnight.

The next morning, I took a short hike up Queen's Canyon, named after Queen Mellen Palmer (General Palmer's wife). Queen Palmer suffered a mild heart attack on a trip up to Leadville during the summer of 1880. Of course, the wheels start turning when I heard this: When, precisely, did this happen that summer? Why was she going to Leadville? What happened afterwards?

I do know that she gave birth to the Palmers' second daughter, Dorothy, about two months later. Her first daughter was born in New York City; the third (and last) in England. I'm very curious about Queen Palmer, and am going to see what else I can find out about her during the 1880 summer timeframe.

Tomorrow ... off to Fort Collins and the Readers Cove for a 6 p.m. event!

8 comments:

Enid Wilson said...

The Cliff House looks great, a bit of mystery and character in it.

Thanks for sharing the photos.

Bargain with the Devil

Patricia Stoltey said...

Hi Ann -- you might want to visit my Monday blog -- I usually feature a Colorado author, but make an exception today for the Californian who sets her mystery series in Leadville, CO. See you this evening at Reader's Cove.

Ann Parker said...

Hello Enid! Yes, the Cliff House was really a wonderful place. I wish I'd had a lot more time there ... but that's seems to be my mantra for every part of my Colorado trip! :-)

Ann Parker said...

Hi Patricia!
Thank you! I'll wander on over your direction...

Camille Minichino said...

I think you may be having entirely too much fun!

(Really, so happy it's all working well!)

Christina E. Rodriguez said...

Gorgeous location! I could imagine creating lots of art in a beautiful space like that.

The Practical Preserver said...

Actually had a dream about Leadville last night. Now trying to see how that might work into my current project. A writer's mind never sleeps!

Ann Parker said...

Hello Karen!
You DREAMT about Leadville?? That's gotta be a sign. I'll be interested to see how you work it into your own writing. :-)