Welcome to our website, a history focused on Ideal, Colorado!
| The Ideal Mine is located about 4.5 miles south of Walsenburg on County Road 330 or Ideal Road.
The mine was opened in 1909 and was operated by the Ideal Fuel Company. During this period the coal camp of Ideal, Colorado was born. According to a map created in 1910 and updated in 1911, there were a few homes built, in addition to a school house and a Colorado Supply Store. The tipple and the spur from the Colorado and Southern Railways were built to remove the coal. In 1910 a post office was also opened. CF&I took over the operation in 1910.
The information that I have shows that the town of Ideal was built slowly over time. CF&I closed the mining operations in 1929 and the official abandonment of the property took place in 1932. In addition to the town buildings several the mining support buildings were built. The town grew over the years to include a YMCA building, Physicians and Bath House, Hotel, Colorado Supply Store and warehouse, new school house and over 91 homes. The streets were straight and lighted and some of the homes had running water.
| During the 19 years of history, the camp functioned as a normal town. Births, marriages and deaths, life events that would occur in any town. There were fundraisers for the war efforts, including sending young men off to war.
Any history of the area would be incomplete if the labor disputes between the miners and CF&I were not mentioned. Ideal was not immune from these disputes. There was definitely a violent, and sometimes deadly, relationship between the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) and the operators of the mines.
The demise of Ideal was initiated when over 300 miners went on strike and forced the mine closed in 1927. The next year the 300 miners found themselves out of jobs and as mentioned earlier the mine was officially closed in 1929.
|This photograph was taken in approximately 1919. The view of the town is looking from the northeast to the southwest. The Spanish Peaks are in the background. Buildings that can be identified – YMCA, Physicians and Bath House, Colorado Supply store, and school house.|
|This site is still under construction. Please keep visiting the site as we will be adding history of the town. We are looking for additional information constantly so please feel free to comment, or contact us to provide your information about the town of Ideal, Colorado.|