When I was in 4th grade we moved from Minneapolis, MN to Denver, CO. In the years that followed our relocation west, a slow but steady stream of family came out to visit and view the Rocky Mountains firsthand. One of our favorite places to take folks at the time (early eighties) was Central City, CO. A small mountain town, once known as the “Richest Square Mile on Earth”, Central City is a historic mining settlement that was founded in 1859. The Pikes Peak Gold Rush made the area and its people famous.
By the late eighties the town was floundering and the candy shops and tourist trap junk stores were boarded up and the buildings were falling into ruin. Casino gambling was brought into Central City in the early 1990’s, and helped the failing town stay afloat, but the success that nearby Blackhawk, Co felt from the casino boom never reached up into Central City.
Personally I remember the town fondly, and I even had a favorite salt water taffy shop that I wouldn’t dream of skipping as a kid. That shop is long gone, replaced with sad casinos, tacky signs, weed shops and crumbling buildings the town is a ghost of its former self. The photo above was snapped of a large mural that tells the story of the once vibrant booming town. The second, a snapshot of the main streets, sitting empty in the middle of the day. If you ever head out west and wish to see what a gold rush town would have looked like back in the day, Central City is a must see…
Both photos snapped with my Canon 6D using a 35mm fixed lens, handheld
“Change is not only likely, it’s inevitable…” Barabara Sher