Marshall Sprague, an Ohio native and long time Colorado Springs resident, wrote over 18 books on Colorado and western history. Among his many publications is Money Mountain: The Story of Cripple Creek Gold. He died in 1994.
Marshall Spragues colorful lifetime spanned the century like a mountain rainbow. Somewhere between the time he learned the true function of the umbrella stand in the Midwest Victorian household of his youth and his first solo train ride to New York City, he surrendered to an innate talent and inquisitiveness that subsequently engaged tens of thousands of his friends and readers. He played the Tiger Rag with a Princeton band on transatlantic steamer crossings.
In 1803, the American minister to Paris, Robert Livingston, received a startling offer. For months, he had been trying to buy New Orleans and West Florida for the United States, with notably little success, and now suddenly Napoleon wanted to sell everything, the entire Louisiana territory, nearly a million square miles stretching from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, from the Mississippi to the Continental Divid.
In 1871, General William Jackson Palmer, a Civil War cavalry hero, dreamed of a Rocky Mountain resort town where sedate, temperate, wealthy folk could enjoy life in tranquil comfort. From its inception as a tiny resort hamlet, Colorado Springs has grown into the second largest city in the Colorado Rockies, with a projected population by 1990 of 400,000.
This reprint makes available again Frank Waters’ dramatic and colorful 1937 biography of Winfield Scott Stratton, the man who struck it rich at the foot of Pike’s Peak and turned Cripple Creek into the greatest gold camp on earth. More than regional history, Midas of the Rockies is a story so fabulously impossible and yet so painfully true that it commends itself to the whole of America, the only earth, the only people who could have created it.