Magazine article Sunset

It's 19th-Century Colorado

Magazine article Sunset

It's 19th-Century Colorado

Article excerpt

In Colorado Springs, one of the state's oldest homesteads is open for touring

NEIGHBORING THE sandstone contortions of Colorado Springs' famous Garden of the Gods is one of the state's oldest continuously farmed homesteads--White House Ranch Historic Site.

Preservationists labored long to save the site from the ravages of time and from development into a golf course and subdivision. Today, this 260-acre city park has a living-history program depicting life in the Pikes Peak region from 1860 to 1910.

Volunteers in period attire till the fields, staff a small general store, and guide visitors through the reconstructed 1868 homestead cabin and the 1907 Orchard House. Restoration of the house, which began in 1979, is nearly complete.

There's good reason to head out to the park early this month. From opening day (June 6) through about midmonth, you can watch heavily muscled draft horses plow the fields, or see blacksmiths firing the next set of horseshoes. Soon, readied fields will be planted the old-fashioned way (no tractors, please) with beets, cabbages, turnips, and the like. …

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