Silver Cliff Off The Beaten Path
The cemetery is a little way out of town, with a wonderful view of the Sangre de Cristo mountains. Since I have not been able to visit Colorado since 1985, a friend of mine took the photos of the cemetery for me, and gave them to me. It was created in the early 1880's and is owned and operated by the Town.
The cemetery is famous for it's unexplained "dancing blue lights" seen on occasion and featured in the August 1969 National Geographic Magazine, Volume 136, No. 2.
My grandparents, great grandparents, and two uncles are buried here. My father had two brothers, one older who died at age 22, and one who lived until his 90s.
My father dictated this story of his childhood in which the cemetery plays a part:
Old Man Wadsworth
Old man Wadsworth was the Justice of Peace in town, but we had no great respect for him. While he was Justice of the Peace, and supposed to be a relative of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, he was an unusual individual in that he never changed clothes and never took a bath. He washed his face in the horse trough in the morning, and that’s about all he ever did. He kept putting on one suit of overalls and they were so dirty and greasy that they were all pasted together. Old Man Wadsworth carried the mail in town. He had chickens and a cow and he lived on cows milk and ate chocolates. Thirty pounds of chocolate a month. I am sure, as I look back, that he had a vitamin deficiency. He was the object of many of our pranks
One Halloween, we thought we would take his mail wagon and haul it out to the cemetery, which was almost a mile out of town. We had no way to get it out there except for about six of us to push it out. While we were doing this, we talked to each other, calling each other by name. When we got clear out to the cemetery, he raised up and said, "Boys I know all your names. Now that you’ve hauled me out here, you can haul me back". This was one of the times that he won.Related to:
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Silver Cliff Favorites
Favorite thing: My grandmother came from Boxbrunn in Germany when she was 14 with her grandfather (second photo taken in Germany), her parents and her brothers. They had a farm in Rosita. When she married my grandfather, they opened a store (the one pictured in the intro) in Silver Cliff. She had five children - two girls, and three boys (four of them are in the last picture - the second girl had not been born yet, and the youngest boy was still in infant clothes).
Because she was an immigrant, they tried to put her back in first grade because she didn't speak good English. But she couldn't take being with the little kids so she dropped out of school. Unlike many people who arrive in this country, she taught herself to speak absolutely correct English without any accent whatsoever.
She really valued education, so she got herself elected to the school board and the teacher boarded with the family. When my dad finished 8th grade, she saw to it that the teacher that was hired was qualified to teach high school, and she had my dad tutored for the first two years of high school until a high school could be started.
Fondest memory: My mom found this picture in the barn, and rescued it. There was also one of my grandfather, but she didn't think he was as pretty (he had mustaches - 4th picture), so she took his picture and put it in the back of the one of my grandmother.
She always thought I looked like my grandmother in this picture which as hung in our home as long as I can remember.Related to:
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