A small cemetery on the windy plains of eastern Colorado has family significance. There’s a Robert Green, who died in 1920, when he was only three and a half years old, was my dad’s older brother. Only my dad was born in 1923, so he never met this brother.
My dad’s family lived in the nearby town of Branson; my grandmother taught school and my grandfather ran the local bank. The one-two punch of the Depression and the Dust Bowl led my grandparents away from Colorado to the northern part of the Texas Panhandle, where my grandmother still taught school and my grandfather cobbled together a living doing anything he could fine. But they left their little son in that Colorado cemetery.
Then in 1944, my grandmother’s mother, who’d come out from Pennsylvania to be near her daughter, passed away and was buried in that same windy place.
And so it was that we we to see the dead ancestors, to revisit my hazy memories of tales often told.
at the cemetery
If you use the definition of ghost town as “so far off the beaten path that there’s no Google street view”, this place fits the criteria.
If you use the definition of ghost town as “located ten miles from the nearest paved road”, this place fits the criteria.
If you use the definition of ghost town as “there were more owls than there were people”, this place fits the criteria.
If you use the definition of ghost town as “places my dad mentioned from his boyhood but that I can’t recall what he said exactly”, this place fits the criteria.
But then: it still has a post office. The ZIP code is 81080, and apparently there’s been a post office there since 1889. (Open weekdays from 10:30 to 12:30, and 8:30 to 10:30 on Saturday.)
And there’s also this church, with the cross taking a decided tilt toward the north. (“What does the inside of the church look like?” you should be asking yourself. Good thing I can help with that totally not at all self-serving sentence.)
Compared to this completely normal thing I saw in the same town, I guess this is just completely boring.
For reasons that were inexplicable and non-negotiable I decided that a driving trip from Lubbock to Denver would not include a single mile driven on a Interstate highway.
It takes me practically forever to get anywhere anyway (because: photography). Add that to the driving conditions (not all the roads were paved, for example), and I think our travel speed was somewhere in the covered-wagon range.
But I saw this.
Ebert County, Colorado