Rio Blanco Days Gone By

The Meeker Herald — 125 years ago
• The ranchmen interested in the Coal Creek Mesa ditch are talking of constructing a reservoir somewhere up Coal Creek Canyon. There is not enough water in Coal Creek to supply all the settlers along its banks and on the adjoining mesas.
• A school board meeting of District No. 18 (White River City) was held to consider the school site. The site was accepted and determined that school should commence Oct. 1 and run five months. Plans and specifications for the school house were ordered. The board was authorized to levy a three-mill tax to cover the expenses.
• A ditch taken out above Veatch’s ranch would cover more than 5,000 acres on the Mesa and on Flag Creek. The ditch would provide for several thousand acres of land still vacant on the mesa to be turned into agricultural land.
• New settlers still continue to arrive. An outfit with eight covered wagons pulled in last evening and camped below town. They left in the morning for Idaho.

The Meeker Herald — 75 years ago
• Reginald Nichols purchased the Valley Truck and Implement Co., which he successfully managed for the past year and a half. Mr. Nichols took over the business and changed the name to Nichols Truck and Implement.
• A government truck carrying surveyors broke through the rotten floor of the bridge crossing Piceance Creek in the Hunter Lane, no one was hurt. Recent rains also damaged the roads considerably in Hunter Gulch.
• Three new radio programs of interest to small town residents and farmers were launched during July as sustaining programs by the Columbia Broadcasting System. “The Farmer Takes the Mike” was the first program.
• Harlen Coulter, owner of the Rio theater building, let a contract to Mr. Jack Miller for the construction of a new concrete sidewalk.

The Meeker Herald — 25 years ago
• The search begins for a new county court judge when Judge Keith F. Dunbar does not file a declaration of intent to seek retention in office. The Ninth Judicial District Nominating Commission will meet early September for the purpose of selecting nominees for appointment by Gov. Roy Romer to fill the position.
• The final game of the summer softball tournament was held between the favored Valley Grocery team with a season standing of 15 wins to four losses, and the White River Ranch Supply team with a season record of 9 wins and 10 losses.
• Jim and Bonnie Wilson had the pleasure of handing out this year’s 4-H Round Robin Showmanship awards to champion Lenny Klinglesmith and runner-up Carol Lynn Whiteman.
• An open house will be held to welcome Dr. Albert Krueger to the Meeker medical staff and to give the community the opportunity to see the new remodeled and more efficient clinic and labor-delivery-recovery room.

Rangely Times — 50 years ago
• About 850 to 900 students in Rangely School District Re-4 will begin their 1963-1964 classwork Sept. 3. A total of 53 teachers have been employed to staff the schools, of which nine are teaching for the first time in this district.
• Wilson Creek Oil Field replaced Adena as the state’s No. 2 producing field. Discovered in 1938, the Wilson Creek field produced at an average of 6,969 barrels a day during July, compared to a 6,016 barrel per day mark for Adena.
• Mike and Bill Pilcher made drawing easels for the preschool classes to be held at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church starting Sept. 3.
• The W.E. Gadd yard on White Avenue was selected for the Yard-of-the-Week plaque given by the Rangely Garden Club.
• The Rangely Jaycees were awarded the Colorado Junior Chamber of Commerce Project of the Quarter Award at the state Jaycee summer conference. The Jaycees submitted a 21-page report on their recent clean-up campaign in Rangely.

Rangely Times — 40 years ago
• Miss Janis Deborah Potter became the bride of Donald Eugene Moore on July 7 in Shepard of the Valley Lutheran Church. Parents of the pair are Mr. and Mrs. Loy A. Potter and Mr. and Mrs. Donald Moore of Rangely, Colo.
• Moon Lake Association has received approval from the Public Service Commission of Utah to consolidate and increase rates. The approval will permit Moon Lake to offer the same rate to each class of consumer for electrical service that they serve in Utah and will eliminate the necessity for a separate set of books for the old Uintah Power customers.
• Rangely’s 13-14 year old OTA team won the regional championship and was runner-up in the district this year.
• Two Denver All-Stars have signed letters of intent to attend Rangely College on baseball scholarships. Randy Seiler, a pitcher, and Bob Weber, a second baseman, both from Denver North High School will attend college starting this fall.

Rangely Times — 30 years ago
• Rangely High School has a new principal. Craig Loper, a native of Montrose, is happy to be back on the Western Slope after serving as an assistant principal and director of activities for three years in Durango. He taught at North Park High School at Walden from 1973-80 and was athletic director in 1979-80.
• The groundbreaking ceremony took place for the new $4 million Rangely Middle School at the site west of the softball fields.
• Harry J. Williams of Rangely was one of 12 in the Division of Education at Western State College who was recently initiated into the Chi Chapter of Kappa Delta Pi, the National Honor Society in Education, according to Dr. Jerrold T. Hanson, chairman of the Division of Education.
• U.S. Sen. Bill Armstrong announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has granted $250,000 in emergency conservation assistance to Delta, Garfield and Rio Blanco counties in Western Colorado. The funds will be used to repair agriculture land damaged by natural disasters.