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Postcard from the Past - Big Crowd Attends Opening of Lodge

Written by Dick Perue

Last time we visited we were enjoying the experiences of a young writer as she shared her thoughts of a new lodge built in the Snowy Range of south central Carbon County. Following a day of exploring in the summer of 1917, Edna Paulson wrote the following in “The Saratoga Sun:”

“I returned to our camp quite enthused over Medicine Bow Lodge.

“That evening as we sat around the camp fire relating our experiences of the day, a light was suddenly flashed upon us, and looking up the road we beheld a Ford ‘rambling right along.’ That was only the beginning of many huge cars that followed. At least 50 cars must have flashed their lights on our camp that evening. We knew they were going to Medicine Bow Lodge and to the Lodge we went.

“The large living room was turned into a ballroom, musicians from the valley caused the feet of the guests to trip lightly to the music, and as I watched the gay scene from a window my imagination soon caused me to see, instead of gay dancers, a band of Indian braves dancing their war dance by the banks of Barrett at the base of the ridge, and the soothsayer came forward and, throwing his hands toward heaven, told of his vision, saying, ‘And monsters with fire eyes shall come, bringing men on their backs. The monsters will run like the wind and all the time growl savagely. Why they come I do not know. Perhaps they come to kill the deer, the elk and the antelope or perhaps they will build lodges here and drive use out.’

“Looking up the driveway, I saw a monster with fire eyes approaching and realized the soothsayer’s vision had come true – that the white men had killed their game and had now taken possession of the forest in the shape of Medicine Bow Lodge.”

In addition to this feature story, the hometown weekly newspaper noted on the front page:

Big Crowd Attends Opening of Lodge. Like Old-Fashioned ‘House-Warming’ was Opening Night at Medicine Bow Lodge.

“About 175 people from various parts of the country attended the opening dance at Medicine Bow Lodge last Saturday evening, and all enjoyed to the full the opportunity to make merry in the bracing mountain atmosphere of an altitude of 8,000 feet as the guests of Sisson and Moore, proprietors of the Lodge. The opening was most successful, and although the camp is not yet entirely completed, the big crowd was taken care of by the matron, Miss Jessie S. Moore, without any apparent inconvenience.

“The fun lasted throughout the night, the majority of the cars leaving the lodge after the coming of daylight. Some of the guests, so well pleased were they with the treatment accorded, even stayed for breakfast.

“All the visitors to the camp were agreed that it is most beautifully situated for the enjoyment of summer life in the mountains, and it will no doubt be largely patronized by tourist and vacationists. But a short time will now be required to put the finishing touches on the buildings and grounds and to install the furnishings, after which the lodge will be in full running order.”