08 April 2012
The Colorado Springs Century Chest
Yesterday afternoon I had to run downtown to buy a birthday card for a certain someone. On the way up Tejon I noticed these gorgeous eastern redbuds in bloom and made a mental note to double back and grab a shot of it. Later on, in editing the picture, I tried to remember what occupied that particular building before its current tenant (the Colorado College), and I was 99% certain that it was Berwick Electric, which makes sense since Berwick has been in business for over 90 years. It's only recently that the building changed hands, actually. But just to be certain, I googled the address -- and I came up with the most interesting document! Here it is: http://coloradocollege.edu/Library/SpecialCollections/CenturyChest/transcription52.html Apparently, in 1901 a fellow named Samuel Le Nord Caldwell, MD, wrote a rather lengthy, detailed missive about Colorado Springs, and put it into something called a "century chest"... you know, a time capsule! I never knew that we had an official time capsule in Colorado Springs, let alone that a century had passed and it had been opened to reveal its contents. Fascinating!
The structure that sits at 815 N. Tejon today was built in the 1930s or '40s I'd guess, judging from the architecture, so Dr. Caldwell wrote his century chest manifesto in what must have been the original structure on that site. I wonder what it looked like and why it was replaced. At any rate, if you have time to read his letter, you should. It's fascinating! To read more about the Colorado Springs Century Chest and its multitude of captivating historical contents, click HERE-- there's even a letter from Vice President Theodore Roosevelt!
And to my wonderful Pat, happy birthday. I love you.