Book Reviews

 Season of Terror: The Espinosas in Central Colorado, March-October 1863

By Charles F. Price
University Press of Colorado, 2013
ISBN 978-1-61732-236-8
$34.95, cloth, 352 pages

Reviewed by Forrest Whitman

A new book about an old terrorist threat is getting a lot of press in Central Colorado lately. Felipe and Vivian Espinosa, and later their nephew Jose Vicente, terrorized Colorado in 1863 (some would extend that threat into 1864). By some accounts they hoped to lead a revolt against the U.S. Government at a time when the U.S. was gradually taking control of New Mexico and Southern Colorado. By some accounts they killed upwards of forty people, all innocent Anglos. They themselves boasted that the kill was 42 Anglos, but other authorities point to 32. At least one of the murdered was of Salida interest. The victim, Henry Harkins, has descendents who knew Harkins well.

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The Caboose

by Forrest Whitman

Come Ride a Santa Train

A few older readers of Colorado Central may remember the Santa trains coming to Salida when they were kids. For many years the Rio Grande R. R. pulled a special caboose into the Salida yards covered in green fir boughs and candy canes (see this month’s cover). Santa waved from the back platform and then proceeded to give out lots of candy supplied by local service clubs. My own kids can remember something of the same sort happening at Union Station in Denver when the D & R.G.W. gave Santa a free ride into town. That Santa even had his own little house set up in the main waiting room. The D.&. R.G.W. has disappeared in railroad blues, but Santa is still very much alive. Kids of all ages can still ride some fine Colorado Santa trains to meet the jolly old elf in 2010. Adults like it too.

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