Cripple Creek, nestled in a saddle valley on the southwestern slopes of Pikes Peak, became a booming gold mining camp in the 1890’s. At an elevation of nearly 10,000 feet, just below timberline, the city’s history is one of highs and lows with fires, disease, outlaws, Indian wars, labor wars, and prostitution.
This is the city that inspired me as I wrote The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series.
Tens of thousands of men (and women) flocked to the rocky mountains of Colorado seeking gold.
Between 1890 and 1910 more than 22,000,000 ounces of gold were extracted from 500 mines in the Cripple Creek District, mainly Cripple Creek and the neighboring town of Victor.
The Cripple Creek District produced more than thirty millionaires.
Many influential women made history in Cripple Creek. I feature and fictionalize at least of those women in each of the Sinclair sisters books. The woman pictured is Mollie O'Bryan, the first woman member in the Cripple Creek Mine Stock Exchange. She serves as the real life woman in Too Rich for a Bride.
By the time the 1800’s came to a close, Cripple Creek had become a cultural destination, drawing the upper tens of Denver and Colorado Springs to its opera houses and ice cream parlors.
This rowdy but charming mountain home of The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek now houses several engaging museums, including the Cripple Creek District Museum, Pikes Peak Heritage Center, Outlaws & Lawmen Jail Museum, and the Old Homestead Parlour Museum.
I hope you’ll spend time in my fictional town of Cripple Creek with Kat, Nell, Ida, and Vivian Sinclair in The Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series, and plan to visit the historic Cripple Creek one day soon. Perhaps you already have.
Have you ever been to Cripple Creek?
Mona Hodgson is the author of nearly 40 books, historical novels for adults and children's books, including the Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series, The Quilted Heart novellas, and Prairie Song. Her children's books include bestseller, Bedtime in the Southwest, six desert and princess I Can Read books, Real Girls of the Bible: A 31-Day Devotional, and her six I Wonder books. Mona's writing credits also include several hundred articles, poems and short stories, which have appeared in 50 different publications. Mona lives in Arizona and speaks at women's retreats, writers' conferences, and schools. Learn more about Mona and her historical fiction at www.monahodgson.com and https://www.facebook.com/Author.Mona?ref=hl.