Highlights from

The Herald Democrat

50 Years Ago

Saints from St. Vincent Repose in Their New Home

September 2, 1971


St. Anthony and St. Vincent de Paul have found appropriate homes where they will spend the rest of their days.

The two saints in their statuary role have graced the corridors of old St. Vincent Hospital for these many years. There they gave heavenly solace to the sick patients and members of their families.

When the move was made to the new St. Vincent Hospital in 1958, the saints — already up in years — were left behind.

The hospital remained vacant until opened as a boarding house more than a year ago by the Price brothers. The two men have terminated the boarding house business, and the building was purchased by Paul Spry. Paul is already busy with plans to make the building into an apartment house, and the two saints needed a new home.

A very fitting last home has been established for the two statues. They are part of the House with the Eye Museum, operated by Mary B. and George Cassidy, who have done an outstanding job in preserving Leadville antiques and historical items for the benefit of Leadville. Their collection is rated as one of the most outstanding private collections in the state and tops as a combination of varied pieces which represent historic Leadville.

The architect and builder of the House with the Eye, Eugene Robitaille, was one of the most saintly of laypeople. Daily attendance at Mass was his regular routine, even in his 80s. His death was due to being struck by an automobile when he was on his way from Good Friday services in a Denver church.

The eye in the House with the Eye represents the all-seeing eye of God. From his heavenly abode Eugene will no doubt smile broadly to see that his fervent religious practice is being preserved by such an addition as two saints.


Leadville Ice Palace

May Be Rebuilt for 1976 Olympics

September 24, 1971


Several Leadville residents have received newspaper clippings from friends in the Los Angeles area. The headline reads: “Famed Leadville Ice Palace May Be Rebuilt for Olympics.”

It has been reported that Los Angeles Times Staff Writer Charles Hillinger secured his information from a tour through the Healy House and a talk with Ned Blair.

The rebuilding of the Ice Palace has been talked about for many years around Leadville gatherings. A group interested in the tourist build-up of Leadville and composed of the William Skalas and Richard Fikanys suggested a long time ago that an effort should be made to make a replica with glass bricks. Ed Christmas has an aunt in the Los Angeles area who has also thought a replica would make a good investment, and has given it some serious thought.

The Leadville Ice Palace of 1896 was the wonder of the world. It still fascinates historians and lovers of the daring as one of the most fantastic and awe-inspiring projects of its time — conceived of and built at a time of economic depression to show the world that “Leadville Lives.”

Leadville is still very much alive, and still planning and thinking all the time. The idea of a replica of the old Ice Palace on Capitol Hill is being researched for practicality and possibility by modern-day visionaries as a Leadville memorial for the 200th birthday of our nation, the 100th anniversary of our state in 1976, and to commemorate the 1976 Winter Olympics in Denver. It’s an idea worth considering.


Mt. Elbert Power Plant Planned for North Lake Shore

September 30, 1971


The multi-million dollar Mt. Elbert pumped-storage power plant for which bids will be opened Nov. 11 will be on the north shore of Twin Lakes.

Immediately northwest of Twin Lakes is 14,433-foot Mt. Elbert, for which the power plant will be named.

Work at the power plant site will include an inlet/outlet development and control gate structure and a penstock (a closed conduit for carrying water under pressure) connecting the gate structure and the power plant.

The pumped-storage power plant will be a reinforced concrete structure 146x186 ft. in size. It will be 180 feet tall and will accommodate one 100-megawatt reversible generating unit initially, plus provide space for a second similar unit which will be installed at a later date when electricity needs increase in the region.

In a preliminary move as part of the project, the Bureau of Reclamation earlier this year awarded a $1,743,400 contract to Allis Chalmers of York, Pa. to construct a pumped turbine for use in the Mt. Elbert power plant. The unit will have a capacity of not less than 138,000 horse power.

Time needed to build the pump turbine made it necessary to award that contract before bids were sought for the Mt. Elbert power plant.

To supplement the amount of water available from the canal, during the late night and early morning hours when there is a limited demand for electric power, additional water will be pumped to the forebay — a small lake with a capacity of 9,000 acre-feet from Twin Lakes — by the pump turbine.

Power will be generated for about eight hours, with the forebay filled during the following 10 hours. Excavation for the power plant will include a pit about 150 feet deep and a 100-foot-wide tailrace channel.

A section of Colorado Highway 82, now running closer to Twin Lakes and nearby Independence Pass to Aspen, will be relocated at a higher point on the hillside overlooking the lake in another phase of the Twin Lakes development.

Originally, seven hydroelectric plants were planned as part of the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project. But these have been modified to two, including the big one at Twin Lakes. From Twin Lakes, water will travel by the Otero Canal to the small (one megawatt) Otero power plant at nearby Clear Creek Reservoir.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.