28 Jan 2011 Leave a Comment
While I would like to say that we ate a breakfast that was indicative of the people and their culture…Cracker Barrel was 2 blocks away, so they won breakfast.
We headed over to Union station to walk around and see the old buildings. Back in the day Union Station must have been grand, because over 120 years later it remains beautiful.
The station was built in 1889 of Manitou red sandstone; inside, rich wood walls, tin ceilings, graceful banisters, chandeliers, and stained glass lend an air of romance to the wanderer’s imagination.
Across the street is the Pueblo county historical society housed in the former D&RGW railroad freight depot (1924.)
The McLaughlin block had several smaller stores around the bigger building that remains (1891.) The carvings over the doorway looked neat.
Before the 1921 flood the lower level was a garden space with a stable in the rear of the building.
In this old photo you can kind of make out the building next to it that isn’t there anymore. Speaking of the flood, here is a picture after the 1921 flood, water heights ranged from 11-18 feet!
This building advertises ‘steam heat’, I’m guessing that was a big deal. A General DeRemer built this structure in 1882.
Graham-Wescott building (1887) uses iron columns and posts to add more entrances to the building fronts.
Wonder why the building says Schlitz? Beer companies would build a saloon so that only their beer could be sold there, ingenious!
Hand wrought copper ornaments are above the door.
We walked down to the river walk and followed the trail to the end where it spills back into the river.
We saw ducks, played some bells, got eaten by a fish and found a nest.
The nest had clear plastic bits woven in and out of the base and we just heard a talk on NPR about birds lining their nests with white plastic to show other birds that they could protect the nest. The scientists observed the birds and offered clear and white plastic and the stronger birds chose white plastic. If the scientist lined an older birds’ nest with white plastic, the bird would actually go and tear out the white and replace it with clear plastic. I guess this bird couldn’t protect its nest very well (or all it could find to make the nest was clear plastic.)
We walked back up the path and saw City hall (in that old picture you can see the steeple poking up at the very back of the picture.)
The Vail hotel (1910) built in the second Renaissance revival style; Vail was the last name of a prominent Pueblo newspaperman (not Vail the city.) The Bayle block was built for Charles Bayle a dyer and tailor.
The ornaments on this building came from the Sear catalog, his other two wooden buildings burned down.
The Riverside building (missing the dome on the top tower) was built for Andrew McClelland (built before 1890.) Italian stonemasons were brought over from Italy to carve 29 carvings on various buildings (including this one.) The other buildings (save two) have been burned or demolished.
Anderson carpet building (1884), cool gargoyles hover overhead.
The Erickson building (1902) shows the use of more manufactured decor rather than stone carvers. Orman block, named for the Mayor of Pueblo James Orman.
Later it was the post office (1898) where the postmaster hatched a nefarious plot to cut down ‘old Monarch’ (the hanging tree) because it interfered with his view of Union street.
Now it is an antique store where I found a 1927 DeMolay (kind of like Masons) dance card for their Christmas ball.
The Hanna building (1881.)
This is the Westcott building again.
Old GE electric sign.
Holmes hardware building (1915.)
The Coors building, another saloon built by a beer company (can’t find the date.)
Anthony building (1873), was a hotel, house and cigar store. The side of the building shows an ad for Walter’s brewery.
Lastly, the L’Unione building (1897, the block was finished in 1903.) This was the home of the L’Unione Italian language newspaper. At the time it was said to be the best Italian newspaper in the US.
Then it was time for lunch, so we went over to the Buell museum and hauled out our lunch. Then we went into the museum and started walking through the Alphabet Zoup exhibits. I like that they center the exhibits and crafts around books, so at each craft station or exhibit there is a book that goes along with it.
There was the bus with ‘T’ for tools, everyone like dressing up and pounding away at the table. The Buell museum has a really cool part that is a sound room. It has tiles on the floors and walls that make noise or start videos in the exhibit.
This time it was Tambani in Africa and we saw dancing, heard Djembe drums and saw yarn stories around the room. In the magic theater they always have a reactrix screen set up with something that moves as you move around.
This time poofs of color floated away or towards us as we moved.
Upstairs Hannah was painting the word ‘stop’ in Japanese characters, the book is Kanji pictographs. It shows the symbols and then a mnemonic device to remember the shape of the lines. We made watercolor alphabets, miniature alphabets, Valentine cards and crafts, kaleidescope computer drawings, purse collages, African bracelets and French fry holders repurposed to hold whatever we want.
Your admission gets you into the art galleries next door too, so we saw some contemporary art, quilt pieces and abstract alphabet art from this book.
Here is Dominoes.
Here is fast food French fry.
This was rubber band, there were rubber bands on the floor too. It was cool to see the art in the book and then see it in person. The girls loved the domino art (only 20K to own it….I’m going to buy some dominoes tomorrow!)
We left at 4 pm when the museum closed and headed back home. Maisy was ecstatic to see us, the cats were not. Nemo was also excited, but only because he wanted to be fed. There are still things to do in Pueblo – the railroad museum, historical museum, Boettcher nature center, gardens and there is that one day when the CF&I tunnel is open to the public – so we still have items for another day.