Silverton, CO

An image of mail leaving the Silverton, Colorado, post office on April 1, 1932. Even today, Silverton is “up there,” a mountain mining town at more than 9,000 feet. The area opened to miners in 1874, after the Ute tribe had been displaced. An estimated 2,000 men appeared to mine the region, and 100 “sturdy souls” lived in Silverton proper to work in the post office, smelters, or assay office. Life was not easy; statistics note the causes of death in early Silverton as 117 from snow slides, 143 from miner’s consumption, 161 from pneumonia, 138 from influenza (most in the 1918 epidemic) and 202 from mine accidents. Today the population is about 500, and many of them work at keeping the road open.

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