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June 2015


Castle Rock Historical Society 
and Museum

Admission is Always FREE!!

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- Exhibits and Events

A Very Successful 6th Annual Trolley Tour

Thank you to all who joined us for the 6th annual trolley tour!! The seats were filled on all 5 tours making this the best turn out in the last 6 years. We toured the bridges in Castle Rock that were washed out by the flood of 1965. 

Visit us at the car show in downtown Castle Rock on June 20, 2015 and see a video taken at the Continental Divide Raceway here in Castle Rock.

June 27th begins the 2015 Summer
Heritage Walking Tours

Join us for a walking tour of historic Castle Rock on June 27, 2015 at 10:30 AM. The 45 minute tour will begin at The Courtyard on Perry Street, between 3rd and 4th streets, and will conclude at the Castle Rock Museum, 420 Elbert Street. Group and bike tours are available by reservation. (303) 814-3164, museum@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org

Visit the Newest Exhibit to the Museum

In 1965 Castle Rock was cut off from the rest of Colorado when Plum Creek and Sellar's Gulch flooded the city and washed out the bridges. Come in to the museum to find out what bridge this was and how much water rushed through Castle Rock before flowing into the Platte river and flooding Denver. 

WE NEED YOUR HELP

This June 16, 2015 will be the 50th anniversary of the 1965 flood that wreaked a great deal of damage along the banks of both East and West Plum Creeks in Douglas County. In memory of this catastrophe the Castle Rock Museum has an exhibit on the flood. We are reaching out to anyone who might have any type of artifact related to this particular flood.


Flood artifacts are of course relatively rare but if someone maybe held on to something that they may have rescued from the raging waters of the Plum Creek, or know someone who did, we would like to hear from you. We can be reached at museum@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org or by phone at (303) 814-3164.


 

June's Presentation Program

June 11, 2015
Refreshments at 6:45 pm, Presentation at 7:00 pm
Philip S. Miller Library
100 S. Wilcox St. Castle Rock, Co. 80104

Join us on Thursday June 11, 2015 for a presentation on the 1965 flood of Castle Rock. Panelists will be sharing their stories from fifty years ago when Castle Rock was flooded. Attendee’s are also invited to share their stories. For more information contact the Castle Rock Museum (303) 814-3164, museum@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org, www.castlerockhistoricalsociety.org. Admission is free.  

June's Calendar

  • June 11, 2015 - Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum's Monthly Presentation

  • June 27, 2015 - Heritage Walking Tour of Downtown Castle Rock

Coming in July

  • July 9, 2015 - Monthy Presentation Program: Martin Marietta/Lockheed Martin- Space and Rocketry in Douglas County

  • June 25, 2015 - Heritage Walking Tour of Downtown Castle Rock!! Call or email the museum for bike or group tours. (303) 814-3164, museum@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org

     

    Visit castlerockhistoricalsociety.org for future exhibits and events.

- THE 5 W's

Do you know about this present day historical location?
Who?
What?
When?
Where?
Why?
Come into the museum for the answers to these questions.

Last months photo was of the present day Augustine Grill, previously The Golden Dobbin restaurant.

- History Corner

My Recollection's of the "Great Flood" of 1965
by Frederick C. Meacham Jr.
 

   At the time of the "Great Flood", I was working for Martin Marietta at the Waterton plant and I was carpooling with a friend and neighbor of mine named Santo Bertuzzi. Santo had just acquired a brand new Chevy of which he was very proud. It was about three months old at the time.
   Anyhow, very shortly after lunch time on "Black Wednesday" I was coming up the stairs in the engineering building. There were two big windows in the stairwell and I was looking out of the building to the south and it was black, not just dark, it was BLACK down there in Douglas County. Just at that time Santo happened on the scene. "Santo, it looks pretty bad down there! I think we'd better get home." "You know, Fred, I think your right!" he said. So we hopped in the Chevy and headed across Titan Road to Santa Fe and down to Sedalia, where we turned west. We stopped at the liquor store for a bottle of wine to have with my supper and I put it in the back seat. We proceeded on south down Route 105. At this time it wasn't even raining where we were.
   About two or three miles down 105 towards home there was a county road truck on the side of the road and the driver was stopping people and saying "There is a bridge down the road away that's kind of shaky and we need to shut the traffic off. You'll have to turn around." "Well is the bridge OK over Castle Rock?" He says, "Far as I know, it is." So we turned around and went north back to Sedalia, and then went south on Hwy 85 towards Castle Rock. And at this point, it really started to rain! We were going along OK until we got opposite the High School and pretty soon it was raining so hard that the road actually disappeared. All we could see out the windows of the car was a sea of muddy water and it was coming clear over the highway and we were sitting right in the middle of it. We stopped and waited and pretty soon the water was coming in the air intake and there was a stream hitting Santos left foot. I said, "Santo, I think we had better evacuate this vehicle and get to higher ground." I was on the down stream side of the vehicle in the passenger seat so I opened the door and stepped out, stepped off the edge of the pavement, and what do you know? I was in water up to my arm pits which is fairly deep since I am 6'4". Santo stepped out and he couldn't get his feet on the bottom at all but I had a firm grip on his hand and we waded a little distance and clamored up on the railroad embankment which was pretty well out of the water. We stood up there on the railroad tracks and watched what was happening. At this point, it was really pouring down rain with small hail accompanying it. It was a BAD scene!
   We stood there and watched the car. Pretty soon, it started to float and go downstream and Santo says, "Good grief. I left the headlights on!" as if that mattered at that point. And I said, "That's not so bad! I left my bottle of wine in the back seat!!' So we stood there and watched the car float away. And mind you, this was on Hwy 85, a fair distance from the creek. The car floated along until it got underneath a diagonal buy wire on a telephone pole which forced it underneath the water and it disappeared! We turned around and walked up the railroad tracks headed for some of the industrial buildings that were just south of where we had gotten up on the railroad tracks. You could hear the roar of East Plum Creek and the "crack" as it snapped off those big old cottonwood trees.
   Anyhow, we got to a building owned by Stroud Whisenant whom I knew, and we went inside. He wasn't there but his son-in-law Buck Mosley was. Buck took us in and turned on the heat in the restroom of the building so we could get warmed up a little bit. He found a pair of dry pants for Santo. They looked real funny on him ‘cause they were way too big and about a foot too long and Santo had them rolled up and he really did look kind of odd. Buck says, "Well, I'll get in the pickup and see what’s going on out there." So, off he goes in his pickup and he's gone maybe fifteen minutes or so and he comes back and says' "Fellows, we're on an island! There’s water to the south, there's water to the north, it's coming down from the east and Plum Creek is really roaring!"
   Well, we sat there for a few hours and finally it subsided and Buck says, "Hop in the truck and I will take you into town." The water was down enough so Buck could get us into Castle Rock and he dropped us off. We ran into an old friend of mine named Hiram Pew, and Hi said, "Come on up to the house. We'll put you up over night. You're not going anywhere! There’s NO WAY you can go west from here! The bridge on Wolfensberger is completely GONE. Both sections!" So we spent the night with Hi and May Pew and the next day we walked on down to where the bridge had been. We were looking across the big open gap, and what do you know! Here comes Santos wife Belle. She's over there on the other side and it's windy and were yelling at her and she says, "Where's the car?" And Santo says, "It's GONE!!" and she says, "What do you mean it's GONE?" And he says, "You know, like G O N E, down the stream." Anyhow, at that point we wondered how are we going to get home? We wandered around a bit and by that time, the National Guard had their helicopters down there and they were ferrying back and fourth across the stream to get people who were stranded on the west side of East Plum Creek on that section of the highway and bring them back over. Most of them had spent the night in the Larkspur school. So we said "Hey, when you’re going over empty, can you set us down on the west side of the creek?" The pilot said sure, so we hopped in the helicopter and went across and he set us down. We eventually hitch-hiked home. 
   Then the fun began. There was no way out by road. Everything was cut somewhere or other. Of course the bridge at Castle Rock was gone. The bridge at Sedalia was gone. All the bridges were gone on East and West Plum Creeks. You could not go south because it was cut along about Reginald Sinclaire's ranch which would be about three miles short of the larkspur turnoff at Perry Park.  There was no phone or electricity. We had to get our water from a neighbor’s windmill. 
   So, along about Saturday, I guess it was, I tool a horse down to Sedalia. At that point of time, East Plum Creek was running very wide and muddy, but only about a couple of feet deep. So I said, "Well, this is a pretty good horse. I think I'll try crossing." There were a lot of people down there waiting and looking around, and they said, "Hey, if you could get the mail, we have somebody who would distribute it. We've got a couple of prescriptions waiting on the other side of the creek and people need medicine and also, boy, we could sure use something cold. The electricity is out and nobody has any refrigeration. How's about some cold six packs!" Winnie Ziegler said, "If I had some baking powder I could make us all some fresh bread!' I said, "Well, I've got a couple of gunny sacks, I'll tie them in the back of the saddle and give it a try!' So we waded out into the water and your OK if you don't look down cause if you do, you're going to go into vertigo, so just keep looking right on across! The old horse, he just found his way and we got over to the other side. Picked up the prescriptions. Picked up some baking powder for Winnie. Picked up the mail and about 6 six packs of cold beer and came back across. First guy that showed up said, "Man, you could sell that cold beer for $5.00 a can right now!" 
   Anyhow, I guess it was about Sunday that Jim Denton and I went over to the Castle Rock crossing with the horses and forded it and went into Castle Rock and bought some groceries and put them on an extra horse and packed them home. Early the next week, I don't remember just when, they got a couple of culverts in so you could get across Plum Creek but we found it almost impossible to get to Martin Marietta because you had to go clear into Denver all the way to Mississippi before you could find a bridge that would get you on the west side of the Platte. So, we'd spend a half day getting there and a half day getting home and maybe an hour at work, so we gave up on that. It was two or three days before they could get some temporary bridges in so that we could get back to work. The Martin Marietta plant had been shut down on Thursday and Friday after the flood because the electricity was out.
   The flood left a humongous mess down in Sedalia because the two forks of Plum Creek came together there and there was rubble piled up everywhere. There were houses, quite a few of them gone, I mean absolutely GONE. The whole west side of Sedalia had disappeared. It was something that you don't really forget in a big hurry! They called it a "100 Year Flood" because that's how often it's supposed to happen. I hope it's at least a hundred years before we see one again.



 

   
   
 

- Historical Society News

Castle Rock Historical Society Board

President - Dorothy Kelly
Vice President - Shaun Boyd
Secretery - Lynette McNairy
Education - Guy Mordeaux
Fundraising - Sandy Schenecker

Treasurer - Jim Allamian

Are you looking for a way to help preserve history in Castle Rock? The Castle Rock Historical Society is looking for someone to fill the Vice President position in September and a Historian to join the board. If you or someone you know would be interested in either one of these positions please contact the Castle Rock Museum by phone (303) 814-3164 or by email museum@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org.

Volunteers

A big thank you to Brad Morrison for all his work on some of the great photo's on display in the museum, Maria Lunn for volunteering her time to lead a  "1965 Flood" Trolley Tour, and Kent Brandeberry, for the usage of many of his priceless artifacts, his wealth of knowlege for the local history, and all the time he volunteers at the museum. We are truly greatful for all you do!! 

-In Our Community

Commemorative Brick Courtyard 

The courtyard at the Castle Rock Museum is continuing to expand, stop by and purchase your own commemorative brick for yourself, a loved one, a business, or even your most cherished animal companion. 

- In the Gift Shop

Looking for unique gift? Come down to the Castle Rock Museum's gift shop for all your historic Castle Rock and Douglas County gifts. We are stocked in 2015 calendars, Robert L. Lowenberg's book "CASTLE ROCK: A Grass Roots History," a handful of children's railroad themed toys, and a limited number of local Castle Rock postcards. 

New to the gift shop at the Castle Rock Museum


"Chronicles of Douglas County Colorado"

Join the Castle Rock Writers for a journey through the history of this land and the diverse legacy left behind by those who made it their home.


 

Along with these popular titles...

You can now support CRHS by shopping on Amazon!!

AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support the Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum, every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to the CRHS. To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device, search and select Castle Rock Historical Society and begin shopping and supporting CRHS. 

Recycle - Save those aluminum cans!! A HUGE thank you to those who have been donating cans!!

The museum collects and recycles aluminum cans to raise money for matching grants. Bring those cans to the museum and use the green container next to the bathroom. Aluminum cans only please. Anything else will be removed by the recycling company. Help the environment and raise a little money for the museum. 

Lionel Oberlin, the first Director of the Castle Rock Museum, has moved to Seattle to be near his daughter, Wendy. You can send all letters through his daughter Wendy at, 
4015 Wallingford Ave N.
Seattle, Wa. 98103-8218 
I am sure he would love to get a card from his many old friends.

Mission: The Castle Rock Historical Society operates the Castle Rock museum, celebrates, educates, and brings together people interested in the preservation of the heritage of the Castle Rock, Colorado area.
Support the Castle Rock Historical Society. Join as a member, make a donation, or sell an item on eBay.

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Association of Northern Front Range Museums
 

Opportunities to Contribute

You know we need you!! Thank you to those who help with hands, time and money. Whatever your skill is, it can help the community in your historical little town of Castle Rock.
To find out how you can help email president@castlerockhistoricalsociety.org .
Copyright © 2015 Castle Rock Historical Society and Museum, All rights reserved.


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