Dolores 1890 - (photo from: www.photoswest.org)
Nestled in the stunning San Juan Mountains at almost 7,000 feet, with the Dolores River running through town, Dolores is
destination for those seeking to explore the outdoors. Spend your days hiking through ancient cliff dwellings, fishing the
McPhee Reservoir, enjoying a beer at the local brewery, shopping for Native American arts, or buying fresh vegetables at the
farmers market. Dolores: big little river town.
The Dolores River was named by two Spanish Catholic priests, Francisco Anastio Dominguez and Silvestre Valdez de
Escalante, as they passed through the area in 1776. On their journey to find a route from the missions of Santa Fe, NM to
California, they discovered the river and called it "Rio de Nuestra Senora de las Dolores" or the River of Our Lady of Sorrows.
Although their purpose was never completed, their visits were the first to be recorded, and they opened up the area for
settlement. The ancestral Puebloans were the origional inhabitants of the area, living here until about A.D 1300. Historians are
still trying to determine why they left the area, leaving behind a wealth of artifacts and remnants of their villages and kivas.
They are believed to be the ancestors to the present-day Hopi Indians of Arizona and the Pueblo Indians of New Mexico.
The next to arrive were the Ute Indians whose migration routes took them through the Dolores River Valley and north, south
east and west into northern Colorado, Utah, Arizona and New Mexico. Some of their descendants now live on the Ute Mountain
Ute and Southern Ute reservations in Southwest Colorado and on the Uintah and Ouray Ute reservations in southeastern
Utah. In 1859 the first Anglo expedition, headed by Newberry, a geologist, and J.N. Macomb, arrived here. According to the
journal they published by Newberry, they came through the area on their way to the junction of the Grand (Colorado) and
The first cattlemen arrived with their livestock in 1876, and began settling the lower Dolores River Valley (now under the
McPhee Reservoir). The Dolores River is the only river in the US to run first south then turn north and run 86 miles before
emptying into the Colorado River near Moab, UT. The big bend of the river, about two miles west of present day Dolores,
became the site of a small settlement called Big Bend in 1877.
In 1891 the railhead was established at the present site of the town of Dolores. The inhabitants of Big Bend moved everything
lock, stock and barrel, to the new site at 6,982 feet elevation and named the town after the river that passed through it.
It was incorporated by July 7th, 1900. Dolores was a busy community in the early 1900 as a major stop for the railroad running
from Durango to Telluride and then Ridgeway. Many of the old structures and buildings are still here. If you stop for a moment
and listen you can still hear the locomotive building steam for the long climb over the pass to Telluride.
Today Dolores is filled with warm and friendly people in an atmosphere that will remind you of the past and the way it used to
be. It is still all here, waiting for you to see and enjoy.
The haunted & historic......Lebanon Schoolhouse B&B!
in 1907, the Lebanon Schoolhouse was the only school for miles. Today, it has been restored and brought to life again as a
cozy B&B. While the historic character of our facility has been preserved, you’ll find every amenity at your fingertips. We hope
to make your stay both comfortable and memorable; we’ll do our best to meet your needs and recommend activities that suit
The Lebanon Schoolhouse was constructed in 1907, in Greek Revival style, to serve the now defunct town of Lebanon and
the region. The original merry-go-round remains in the schoolyard. The Schoolhouse served as a cultural and educational
center for the region until it was closed in 1963. Restored and brought to life again as a B&B in the 1980s, the Schoolhouse
has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1996.
Although the innkeeper/owner herself has not experienced anything of a paranormal nature in the old
schoolhouse, she says that some guests report that they have heard the sounds of children laughing while
staying in the Recess Room (although there happen to be no children there at the time).
Under the stewardship of owners Ken and Laura Hahn, the Schoolhouse offers the ideal combination of modern amenities and
historic beauty. And breakfast is not to be missed!
Lebanon Schoolhouse Bed & Breakfast
24925 Road T | Dolores, Colorado 81323
Toll Free 877-882-4461 | 970-882-4461 | firstname.lastname@example.org
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