Festivities turned to thievery in 1913 | PostIndependent.com

Festivities turned to thievery in 1913

Willa SoncartyRegistrar, Frontier Historical Society and Museum
Photo Courtesy Frontier Historical SocietyThis photograph shows the home of George Edinger at 1001 Colorado Ave. in about 1920. After having his back porch stolen during Halloween 1913, it appears that Mr. Edinger had the porch replaced with a more substantial concrete structure. Today, the Edinger home houses the Frontier Historical Museum.

What is that younger generation coming to? – Glenwood Post, undatedHalloween in Glenwood Springs had traditionally been a holiday of organized activities. Parties at private homes complete with games, costumes, candy and prizes kept young people entertained and channeled their energies in a positive way.That is not to say that pranks and mischief on Halloween night did not occur. However, Halloween 1913 would be recorded as one of the most active in Glenwood Springs’ history.The pranks and mayhem actually started on Oct. 29. That evening, yard gates disappeared from their fences in large numbers. The following evening, clotheslines were targeted, with lines throughout town going missing without a trace. A large group of young boys was believed responsible for the thefts, but none had been caught.The evening of Oct. 31 came, and Halloween parties were again held throughout the community. However, it appears the boys responsible for the two prior evenings’ mischief were not invited to any of the festivities. This gave them ample opportunity to pull off the greatest caper of the holiday.Searching for a larger catch, the boys zeroed in on the back porch of the home of George Edinger at 1001 Colorado Ave. Edinger, a real estate/insurance agent/stock broker, was viewed by many in the community as a very serious-minded businessman. Additionally, during the last week of October, he was out of town visiting relatives with his daughter, Stella. His absence, as well as his no-nonsense approach to life, made his property a perfect target. Twenty-five young men entered Edinger’s backyard. With group strength, the Edingers’ back porch was lifted from its moorings and scurried away under the dark of night. To the thieves, it was probably considered one of the greatest heists in the town’s history. However, like all good capers, no one can keep silent when they feel the need to tell a great story. Word got out, and the 25 were quickly caught. On Nov. 5, 1913, all were presented before Police Magistrate Squires, who lectured them very sternly about the severity of their actions, which aside from the thefts, included pumpkin smashing. It is not known what restitution all were forced to pay.The memory of the Halloween heists of 1913 did not quickly fade. Years later the story would be printed in newspapers just prior to Halloween as a cautionary tale for all future pranksters. “Frontier Diary” is provided to the Post Independent by the Frontier Historical Society and Museum, 1001 Colorado Ave., Glenwood Springs. Winter hours are 1-4 p.m. Monday and Thursday through Saturday. For more information, call 945-4448.

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