Good cheer at Sheridan’s Cooper Ave. saloon |

Good cheer at Sheridan’s Cooper Ave. saloon

Willa Soncarty
Registrar, Frontier Historical Society and Museum

In rain or shine, in snow or hail

We all lined up on Sheridan’s rail;

Upon its highly polished brass,

You’d place your foot and raise a glass

“Here’s a how” and words of cheer

Another scoop of Sheridan’s beer.

” Phil Kirwan, Glenwood Springs photographer

James Sheridan’s bars were a place of recreation and camaraderie. And for a man seeking a good stiff drink, Sheridan always delivered.

Hailing from Ireland, James Sheridan came to the United States in 1873.

Working his way westward, by the late 1890s he had located to Glenwood Springs.

He set his sights upon joining the ranks of the town’s businessmen, and soon found himself immersed in the wholesale and retail liquor business.

In March 1900, James Sheridan expanded his share of the local liquor market.

He purchased Joseph Strassheim’s saloon and rooming house at 420 7th St. That same year he purchased lots in the 700 Block of Cooper Avenue, intent upon building a new place of business.

Sheridan began construction of his new establishment at 720 Cooper Avenue in 1905.

Fitting the business with modern equipment and some of the finest bar fixtures in town, Sheridan’s new saloon and wholesale liquor house opened to patrons May 26, 1906.

He diversified his income by leasing part of the building to restaurateur August Lieben, and the second floor to boarding house operator John Fitzpatrick.

Ten years later, prohibition made Colorado a dry state, and Sheridan’s bars closed.

His Cooper Avenue building then housed the City Bottling Works, where the strongest drink on location was soda pop, and later the Glenwood Springs Creamery Co.

In the end, James Sheridan was remembered for his honesty and generosity.

His saloons were remembered as places for cheerful gathering.

“Frontier Diary” is provided to the Glenwood Springs Post Independent by the Frontier Historical Society and Museum, 1001 Colorado Ave., Glenwood Springs. Winter hours are 1 to 4 p.m. Monday and Thursday through Saturday.

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