Wednesday, April 20, 2016


Post by Doris McCraw/Angela Raines-author

Let's talk Colorado. It's called the Centennial state. Colorado joined the Union, August 1876.

Although Colorado has a thriving population today, it was late to be settled. One reason may be due to the fact that as folks were heading to California for the gold rush, or Oregon, many felt the mountains in this state were impassable. It is understandable, for Colorado has over fifty peaks above 14,000' and they literally cut the state in half. Most of the passes are 10,000+ to get from Eastern to Western Colorado.
Pikes Peak from the West
When the early settlers arrived in what is now Colorado, the Utes were living in the mountain areas, and the plains had the Comanche, Cheyenne, Kiowa and Arapaho.

Bent's fort was one of the early significant step to settlement. It dates from about 1833 and at the time, it was just men who built and inhabited the site. Those who did marry, it was usually with Indian women. Near the Santa Fe trail, the first non native women is now considered to be Mary Donohoe in 1833.

In 1851, San Luis was settled by Hispanic settlers from the Taos, New Mexico area. At the time that part of Colorado was part of New Mexico. San Luis is considered the first permanent town to be settled in what is Colorado. To put this in perspective, my college was founded in 1850.

In 1846 a group of Mormons had an encampment near the business fort of Fort Pueblo. They grew crops and harvested them before moving on to Utah in 1847.

Imagine Traveling in the stagecoach
Denver Colorado was founded around 1858, and Colorado City 1859. Colorado Springs 1871. This is when non-Native and non-Hispanics began arriving to settle.

For a quick overview, here is a quick read :

Most of my stories take place in Colorado in the fictional town of Agate Gulch, set in the high country just west of Pikes Peak.

Agate Gulch is where Clara's past catches up with her and Sam finds he must do what he can to save her.


“Hey,” Sam said, “you look like you’re going to cry.”
He wrapped strong arms around her, pulled her close, bent his head to kiss her forehead. He looked into her eyes, and without warning, put his hand under her chin and raised her lips to his. Clara stiffened at his touch. Then, he was kissing her. Clara put her arms to his shoulders. She relaxed, leaned into his strong chest. Their lips touched, breath slowing until nothing else existed except the two of them. It felt so good to think someone cared, someone loved her…even if it wasn’t really true.
Sam drew back, his breath deep, as if swimming for the surface of the water. He stared into Clara’s eyes, as though he were trying to see if she had felt what he did. Lightening the moment, he stepped back, but continued to gently hold onto her.

“Whoa, if I knew that kissing you...well I’d have done it a lot sooner.” He smiled.

Angela Raines is the pen name for Doris McCraw. Doris also writes haiku posted five days a week at - and has now passed one thousand haiku and photos posted on this blog. Check out her other work or like her Amazon author page:




  1. Colorado is such a beautiful state! I can see why setting a story there would be fun. It would be like immersing yourself in that beauty everyday. Someday I'd like to take that Silverton Railroad trip with my husband. Thanks for an informative post!

  2. Angela/Doris ~ the above note is from me (Kathryn Albright). I tried a different ID and got the above.

    1. Thanks Kathryn. I admit, Colorado got into my blood when I first moved here in thr 70's. Now, well let's just say they can't get rid of me. I did the Cumbres-Toltec (a similar trip to the Durango one) and it was breath taking. If you get the chance, take it. Angela/Doria

  3. Thanks for an excellent post, Angela. I'm fond of the Colorado Rockies, both as a setting for books and for road trips. It's a gorgeous part of the country. And your excerpt caught my attention!
    Kristin Holt