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Post office has been in many locations

Willa SoncartyRegistrar, Frontier Historical Society and Museum
Photo Courtesy Frontier Historical SocietyCompleted in 1919 at a cost of $76,200, the Federal Building at 902 Grand Ave. served as the post office for Glenwood Springs. In 1965, the postal facilities were moved from the Federal Building to a new building at 113 Ninth St. Today, the Federal Building houses the offices of the White River National Forest.
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The sending and receiving of mail is vital to any community. The establishment of a post office not only bridges the gap between a community and the outside world, but also creates a vibrant social fabric within that community.On July 18, 1883, the first assistant to the postmaster general received an application from Caroline Ella Barlow to establish a post office at Glenwood Springs. The office’s location was simply described as “20 rods on the south side of the Grand River” near the confluence of the Grand (Colorado) and Roaring Fork rivers. The post office was fittingly called “Barlow.” However, citing “red tape difficulty,” by Sept. 1, 1883, the Barlow Post Office had not become operational, and the mail was in the safekeeping of a Mrs. Garrison. Eventually, the Barlow Post Office was put into operation, with mail being transported in and out by stage. On July 1, 1884, the name of the Barlow Post Office was changed to the Glenwood Springs Post Office. Lyman Mow was the postmaster, and the office was moved to a site near the intersection of Seventh Street and Minter Avenue.With each change of postmasters came a change of post office location. From a lot at the west end of today’s Hotel Denver, to 719 Grand Ave., to 816 Grand Ave., to 802 Grand Ave., residents grew accustomed to picking up their mail in various locations. Additionally, each postmaster loaned his personality to the operation. Apparently, under the watch of Postmaster W.T. Beans, the availability of mail was substandard. When Miss Amelia Williams succeeded Beans on Sept. 1, 1897, the Avalanche Echo newspaper pleaded to Miss Williams to have the office opened by 7:15 a.m. and to have all mail distributed by that time. At 805 Grand Ave., Postmaster Ollie Thorson constructed a building dedicated for use as a post office. The building was completed in 1909, the same year the visionary Thorson received approval for home mail delivery to Glenwood Springs residents.The post office moved again to the Federal Building at 902 Grand Ave. in 1919. In 1965, operations were moved to their current Ninth and Colorado location.”Frontier Diary” is provided to the Post Independent by the Frontier Historical Society and Museum, 1001 Colorado Ave., Glenwood Springs. Summer hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.


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