Victor Lowell Thomas Museum Hosts Book Signing for Local Author
The shady side of history has been the focus of research for Victor author Jan MacKell Collins. Collins has just published a third book on the subject of red light districts in the West. The books put a human face on the hidden histories of prostitutes and the shady side of mining camps.
Collins’s latest book, Wild Women of Prescott, Arizona, tells the stories of shady ladies in the uncivilized territory of Arizona. Prostitution was a wide spread business in the West and often, as Collins found out in researching her latest book, some of the same paths crossed over into more than one camp. One such case was Lida Winchell, whose real name was Eliza Jane Crumley. Cripple Creek District historians will recognize the last name from the story about the shooting of mining mogul Sam Strong in the Newport Saloon on Bennett Avenue. As Collins found out, Lida is the niece of Grant Crumley who shot Strong in a gambling argument in 1901.
Both Victor and Cripple Creek had active Red Light Districts in the gold rush days and Collins has captured several of the true stories of those who conducted business in the brothels and cribs.
Collins will be at the Victor Lowell Thomas Museum Saturday, Sept. 5 from 3 to 6 p.m. to sign her new book and others she has written, including Red Light Women of the Rocky Mountains, Brothels, Bordellos & Bad Girls, and Cripple Creek District: Last of Colorado's Gold Booms. A limited number of books will be available for signing.
The public is invited to meet Collins at the museum and learn more about the stories of the past. The event is free and will be held in the museum gift shop.
Collins writes about prostitution history and other interesting aspects of the West. She is formerly the director of the Cripple Creek District Museum and the Old Homestead Parlor House Museum in Cripple Creek. She has also had the pleasure of working for Sharlot Hall Museum in Prescott, AZ and is a former board member of the High Desert Heritage Museum in Cordes Junction, AZ. In addition, Collins has written over 2,000 western history articles for magazines in Colorado, Montana and Arizona, including True West magazine. In 2010 she was nominated for Women Writing the West's WILLA award for her 2009 book, Red Light Women of the Rocky Mountains; also, she was a co-nominee in 2011 for the 2010 anthology Extraordinary Women of the Rocky Mountain West. In addition to her writing, Collins has given over 40 programs on the subject of prostitution and western history, and has been featured on Rocky Mountain PBS.
Veterans Remembered at Victor Sunnyside Cemetery Walking Tour
Step back in time and learn about Victor’s 1890’s cemetery, its resident veterans, and the history that brought them to the gold mining camp. This event is sponsored by the Victor Lowell Thomas Museum and will be held Saturday, May 16 as part of Colorado’s Archaeology andHistoric Preservation Month. That days is Armed Forces Day and the focus of the walking tour will be on the veterans and their stories.
Local historian Veldean Petri will provide insights into the cemetery, its history and some of the veterans who reside there. The event will be held at the Sunnyside Cemetery which is south of town on Seventh Street. Meet just outside the gate in Pauper’s Field by 10 a.m.
Pre-paid credit card reservations are encouraged and can be made at VictorColorado.com. Tickets at the event are by cash only. All tickets are $10 per person. Proceeds benefit the museum’s building and restoration fund.
Be sure to dress appropriately for spring mountain weather (which can include wind, cold temperatures, snow, and rain), wear good hiking shoes or boots, and bring water and sunscreen. There are no restroom facilities at the cemetery.
Book By Ed & Cherry Hunter Mining History Book Released
The Victor Lowell Thomas Museum celebrated the release of a new book by local mining historian Ed Hunter and his artist wife Cherry on Friday, Aug. 23. The new book features the mining history art of Cherry Hunter and Ed’s descriptions.
The book release reception was held at the VLT Museum with Liz Hunter-Ball and Kim Sailor-Hunter and many friends attending.
Reservations for the book are available... Click here for details.