Wilbur Fiske Stone.

History of Colorado; (Volume 4) online

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justice of the peace in Aurora township for three terms. In this office he has proven
faithful and loyal, his decisions being strictly fair and impartial, being based upon
the law and the equity in the case. He has. however, never been a politician in the
sense of office seeking, as his business affairs have made steady demand upon his
time and energy. Obstacles and difficulties have at various points in his career im-
peded his progress toward the goal of success, but with persistent effort he has pushed
forward and is today one of the substantial ranchmen of his section of the stale.


Charles M. Miller is a prominent funeral director, undertaker and embalmer of
Denver. In fact he is the second oldest in this line of business in Colorado, having
been continuously so engaged since 1879. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,
August 20, 1853, a son of Charles M. and Louisa (Frederickson) Miller, who were like-
wise natives of Philadelphia, where they always resided, the father being a well
known banker of that city. Both have now passed away.

Charles M. Miller was the youngest in their family of seven children. In early
boyhood he attended the schools of Philadelphia and alterwaj-d became a student

Vol. IV— 51


In the Kansas State Agricultural College at Manhattan. He had gone to that state as
a boy and after leaving the institution he removed to Denver, where he arrived on the
21st of September, 1871. He was employed along various lines until 1879, when he
turned his attention to the undertaking business, in which he has since been actively
engaged. He has continued uninterruptedly in this line for more than a quarter of a
century and for many years he occupied one location, but eventually the growth of
his business forced him to seek larger quarters. His mortuary, which is now located
at No. 800 East Colfax avenue, is one of the finest in the city. It is equipped as nearly
as possible like a home and many of the leading funerals of the city are there held.

In 1881 Mr. Miller was married to Miss Nellie Dority, a daughter of Arthur and
Philomena Dority, both of whom were born in Salem, Massachusetts. Mr. and Mrs.
Miller became parents of three children, but two have passed away — Arthur and
Nellie. The surviving daughter, Marie J., is a graduate of St. Joseph's Sacred Heart

Mr. Miller gives his political allegiance to the republican party and in 1882 and
1883 served as county coroner of the city and county of Denver. He is identified with
all branches of Masonry and has attained the thirty-second degree of the Scottish
Rite. Since joining the order he has been a worthy exemplar of the craft and his
many sterling traits of character are attested by his brethren of the fraternity as
well as by many with whom he has come in contact through business and social


Isador Rude is the president of the Union State Bank of Denver and his record Is
a notable one of successful achievement. Denver knew him first as a dishwasher in a
summer garden. He had come to the west on money advanced him by a charitable
institution of New York city, making the trip in search of health, which had failed
him in the east. He was born in Belgium. November 14, 1875, a son of Meyer and
Rachael Rude. The father was a well known diamond cutter of his native land,
where he resided until 1890, when he crossed the Atlantic to New York and there
worked at his trade until his death, which occurred in 1913. To him and his wife were
born five children, four of whom are still living: Alexander, Isador, Joseph and Irma.

In early life Isador Rude attended school in Belgium and after coming to America
in 1896 remained with his parents in New York until 1898, when he made his way to
Denver. The story of his achievements is a most interesting one. On reaching the
new world he at once procured employment in a tailoring establishment of New York
city of the sweat shop class. For two years he worked day and night and then his
health failed. He lost his position and with no means of support it seemed that he
must become an object of public charity, but the character and ambition of the
young man would not permit of this. However, he accepted a temporary loan from a
charitable institution, securing a sufficient sum to enable him to reach Denver, where
he arrived with but eighty cents in his pocket. After reaching this city he called on
the local charity board and was offered a small sum every week. He said, however,
that he did not wish financial assistance — all that he wanted was the opportunity to
earn his own living. He was first employed as a man of all work at a big summer
garden, where he remained for a week, and then secured a position as waiter in an
eating house. After a brief period his employer announced his unfitness for the job,
telling him, however, that he would give him work at washing dishes, paying him with
three meals a day. By work at night he managed to pay his room rent and was con-
stantly on the alert for opportunity to secure something better. He was not long
in obtaining a position with Schradsky, the tailor, at a wage of four dollars per week
and in a year was earning six dollars per week. It was then that he started out on
his own account. Obtaining a few samples, he managed to rent a store and then went
from do6r to door and to various oflBces, taking orders. On the second anniversary of
the day on which he reached Denver he was able to deposit one hundred and twenty-
five dollars in the bank. From that time forward his trade steadily increased. He
adopted as his business motto: "Truth, first, last and all the time," and the policy
which he thus inaugurated has guided him in every relation of life. He has been
quick to recognize opportunity and to utilize advantages and has displayed an initiative
spirit that has brought him prominently to the front. On one occasion he visited a
printer, a man of large physique, in order to get some cards printed. The man, look-
ing at Mr. Rude, said: "You'll have to get on a stepladder to talk to me." The idea


as an advertising medium at -once appealed to Mr. Rude, who had his cards printed:
"I. Rude, the Little Tailor," and put a picture of himself standing on a stepladder
measuring a pair of pants for a big man. The clever advertisement soon won atten-
tion and when once he secured patronage he had no difBculty in holding the trade.
As the years passed on and he prospered, Mr. Rude never forgot that in the early
years of his career he needed assistance and he has always been a most generous
contributor to charities. He has repaid his fare to Denver many thousands of times
and still contributes to the organization which advanced him the money to make the
trip. He has been a close student of many sociological and economic problems and has
always believed in giving the individual a chance to help himself. It was this that
led him to make gifts of clothing to newsboys that they might be presentable and
might be able to save. Moreover, he taught them to tell the trutli and not to be
stingy when there was a call of charity. After a time Mr. Rude became an investor
in business interests in Texas and eventually he became a stockholder in the Union
State Bank of Denver. It was then that his well earned reputation for honesty and
reliability stood him in good stead, for his friends, learning that he was connected
with the bank, felt that it must be a thoroughly reliable institution and in eight months
the deposits of the bank had doubled — all through his friends. He still conducts sev-
eral branch tailoring establishments in a number of the larger cities in Texas but in
Denver is largely concentrating his efforts and attention upon his banking business.
In January, 1918, he was elected by the directors of the Union State Bank to the presi-
dency, notwithstanding he was a minority stockholder, and to the management of
this institution he is bringing the same unfaltering enterprise, clear judgment and
determined purpose that have characterized his business activities in former years.

On the 15th of June, 1904, Mr. Rude was united in marriage to Miss Bessie Mandles,
a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Mandles. and they have one child, Gustave, born
in Denver in December, 1906, and now attending the Westlake Military Academy.

Mr. Rude has never believed in extravagance in his personal affairs, and as he has
prospered in his undertakings he has given his surplus earnings to charity. He de-
votes much time to charitable institutions and is one of the largest individual con-
tributors to Jewish and other charities in Denver. There is never an appeal made to
him in vain. Outside of his actual needs, tor which he allows about thirty-five hun-
dred dollars per year, he gives his entire income to charity and he is now the vice
president of the Jewish War Sufferers' Relief and is also associated with various
national Jewish charities. He is still a comparatively young man and his future
career will be well worth the watching. His course, however, is well marked out and
the future will but indicate a broadening of the scope of his activities for the benefit
of mankind. A man of his kindly nature and generous disposition naturally has
hundreds of friends and all know that throughout the entire period of his residence
in Denver his course has measured up to the highest standards of manhood and


Pleasant De Spain has spent almost his entire life in Colorado, having been but a
little lad of five years when brought to this state. His birth occurred in Monmouth,
Illinois, on the 15th of December, 1858, his parents being Pleasant and Sarah De
Spain. The father was born in Kentucky, while the mother was a native of Illinois.
Mr. De Spain followed farming in the Mississippi Valley and remained in Illinois
until 1863, when he brought his family to Colorado. He afterward engaged in freight-
ing between Denver and the mines for three years, at the end of which time he began
getting out timber in Cold Creek canyon. In 1870 he filed on one hundred and sixty
acres of land on section 32. now known as Westminster, and there he devoted his atten-
tion to general agricultural pursuits throughout his remaining days, his death occurring
in 1891. His widow survived him for a considerable period and died in 1904.

Pleasant De Spain of this review, a lad of but five years when brought to Colorado,
pursued his education in the schools of Wheatridge and also the Wolff school in District
No. 9, near his father's home. At an early age he began to assist his father in the
work of the fields and continued farming with him until he reached the age of twenty-
six years, at which time he started out independently, leasing one hundred and sixty
acres of land which he cultivated for two years. He next turned his attention to the
contracting business in Denver, doing excavating work for four years. He afterward
resumed farming, however, and has specialized in fruit growing on a ten-acre tract,


farming at Westminster throughout the intervening period. He has
subject of fruit culture, the condition of the soil, the needs of the trees and the best
methods for their care. His orchards have been large producers, indicating that his
methods are at once practical and progressive.

On the 15th of May, 1883, in Westminster, Colorado, Mr. De Spain was married
to Miss Myrtie V. Davis, a native of Virginia and a daughter of Henry Davis. They
have become parents of four children: Maude M., the wife of Burt Flanders, by whom
she has one son, Delton; Stanley, living at Westminster, who married Gertrude Riggs
and has three children — Shirley, Louise and Olive; A. Lynn, of Denver, who married
Laura Sheldon and has one. son, Sheldon; and Allan, of Westminister, who married
Anna Nichols.

Mr. De Spain votes with the democratic party and for two years served as con-
stable in Adams county but has never been an office seeker, preferring to concentrate
his efforts and attention upon his business affairs, which have been wisely directed
and have brought to him a substantial measure of success. As a pioneer citizen of
Colorado he has witnessed the growth and development of the state for fifty-five years:
and is familiar with its history and the events which have marked its progress. He
can relate many interesting incidents of the early days and stories of the conditions
which then existed, and he rejoices in what has been accomplished as the years have
gone on and as the progressive settlers have carried their work steadily forward.


Addison J. McCune, thorolighly grounded in the fundamental principles of civil engi-
neering and with power strongly developed through practical experience, is now serving
as state engineer and is regarded as one of the best as well as one of the oldest repre-
sentatives of irrigation and civil engineering work in the state. He was born in Ames-
ville. Athens county, Ohio. August 27, 1848, a son of Joseph and Sarah (Cradelbough)
McCune, both of whom were also natives of Ohio. The father engaged in farming and
both he and his wife passed away in'l850, when their son Addison was but a little lad
of two summers. Being thus left an orphan, he was taken by an aunt, who reared him
as her own child. After mastering the branches of learning taught in the district
schools he continued his education by a high school course and when eighteen years of
age took up the profession of teaching, which he followed until he had earned a sufficient
sum which enabled him to pay his tuition in the acquirement of his further education.
He then entered the Normal School at Lebanon, Ohio, and after completing a special
course there was again engaged in teaching. He followed that profession until 1874, when
his health failing, he engaged in farming. Prom 1869 until 1879 he utilized his leisure
hours for reading, investigation and study and was thus actively preparing for liigher
training. In 1876 he was elected county school superintendent of Jackson county, Indiana,
where he remained for five years, filling that position most acceptably. He then resigned
in 1879 and came to Colorado in search of health. His health improving, he was with
a Union Pacific Railway Company survey party for a short time in connection with
location work, but later secured a better position on the engineering force of the Denver
& Rio Grande Railroad Company, and was on location work in the Gunnison and Grand
valleys, remaining with them until July, 1882. He resigned his position to take up mine
engineering, which he followed at Aspen and at Ashcroft. He remained in that work,
however, only until January. 1883, when he removed to the Grand valley. Colorado, to en-
gage in irrigation work. This seemed to Mr. McCune a small undertaking, but from
the initial effort in the digging of the first small ditch the project developed into one
of the largest irrigation canals in tjie west. He removed his family to Grand Junction
to be near his work and they remained there through the succeeding sixteen years. He
brought to the solution of the problems connected with the work scientific understanding
of principles underlying his efforts and his ready adaptability enabled him to quickly
secure a solution for vexed questions and promote the project in such a way that it
became a source of untold value to the district in which he operated. Along with his
irrigation work he took up mining and furthermore added to his activities by serving
as county clerk, to which position he was elected by popular suffrage, also serving for
three terms as county surveyor. During his sixteen years' residence in the Grand valley
he held the office of superintendent of irrigation of Division No. 5 for one term and his
efforts in that connection did much toward reclaiming the arid lands of the district and
converting them into a most productive region. In 1899 he was appointed by Governor
Thomas to the position of state engineer and remained in that capacity under Governor



Thomas and his successor, Governor Orman. He then concentrated his efforts and atten-
tion upon private enterprises and civil engineering work, but was appointed state engi-
neer for the third time by Governor Gunter, the present gubernatorial incumbent of
Colorado, and Is again most efficiently and faithfully serving in that capacity. In the
private practice of his profession he has largely confined his attention to irrigation
work and has therefore become one of the best informed and most capable irrigation
engineers of the west. He is also recognized as an authority on hydro-electric power
plants and has done much for the promotion of hydro-electrlc work. He is also the
vice president and one of the directors of the Negros Philippine Lumber Company.

In 1873 Mr. McCune was united in marriage to Miss Belle Hinderlider, of Medora,
Indiana, who there passed away in 1878. She was a daughter of Joel C. and Ellen Hin-
derlider and by her marriage became the mother of one child, Nellie McCune, who died
in California. In June, 1889, Mr. McCune was again married at Grand Junction, Colo-
rado, his second union being with Miss Emma Kent, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
James Kent.

Their religious faith is that of the Baptist church and through fraternal relations
he is identified with the Masons, these associations indicating much concerning the rules
and principles which govern his life. He is a man of high purpose, of unquestioned
integrity in business affairs, and his record is such a one as wins instinctive deference
from the world. His life should serve to inspire and encourage others, showing what
may be accomplished through individual effort. He provided for his own education,
and while he is today a man of pronounced ability, this has come through his personal
activity and is illustrative of the fact that power grows through the exercise of effort.
Each hour with him has marked off a full-faithed attempt to know more and to grow
more and he is today occupying an eminent position in professional circles.


Karl Faden, who is devoting his attention to the business of commercially raising
trout in Adams county, was born in Germany, December 5. 1879, a son of Mr. and
Mrs. Joseph Kreszenzia (Mattes) Faden, who were also natives of that country, where
they have always resided. They had a family of eleven children, three of whom are
now living.

Karl Faden spent his youthful days in his native country and pursued his educa-
tion there. He was a young man of twenty-three years when he left Germany and
came to America in 1902. He crossed the continent to Denver and for five years was
employed at the cabinetmaker's trade in that city, during which period he care-
fully saved his earnings until the sum was sufficient to enable him to embark in busi-
ness on his own account. Later he piirchased a brewery at Silverton, Colorado, and
conducted the business there for about nine years. On the expiration of that period
he removed to his present place of twenty-five acres, whereon he has given his
attention to the business of trout raising and now has about two hundred thousand
trout on hand. He has recently purchased eighteen acres additional, and will devote
this to trout raising in connection with the Colorado State Fish Hatchery No. 1. This
has become an important commercial enterprise. He has thoroughly studied the busi-
ness and his capable direction of his interests is bringing to him deserved success.

In 1907 Mr. Faden was married to Miss Katie Gruidl, a native of Hungary. They
are members of the Catholic church and Mr. Faden gives his political support to the
democratic party.


Homer H. Thomas, secretary and treasurer of the Big Five Hundred Oil Company
of Denver, was bom in Estill, Missouri, June 20, 1882, a son of C. and Jennie (Hetzley)
Thomas, both of whom are also natives of Missouri. The maternal grandfather, M.
P. Hetzley, established his home in Missouri at a very early period and there engaged
in farming. The grandfather in the paternal line was also a well known farmer of
that state and a Civil war veteran. The father took up the occupation of wagon and
carriage building at Estill, Missouri, and has become widely known in that connection.
Both he and his wife are still living. To them were bom the following children:
Noble, who resides at Lander, Wyoming; Homer H., of this review; Gabriel, living in


St. Louis, Missouri; Mrs. Mary Ashley, also of Missouri; and Mrs. Ruth Delaney.
whose home is in St. Louis.

At the usual age Homer Thomas became a pupil in the schools of St. Louis,
where he passed through consecutive grades to the high school. He also pursued a
business course and afterward turned his attention to coal mining, being first em-
ployed by others and later engaging in mining on his own account in his native state.
Eventually he sold his interests there and became connected with the American Gas
Company as a salesman and business manager at Kewanee, Illinois, where he resided
for seven years. He then came to Colorado, settling in Denver, where he operated
under lease a moving picture theatre, known as the York theatre, on East Colfax
avenue. This he conducted successfully until 1916, when he organized the Big Five
Hundred Oil Company, which leases oil lands in Wyoming and Oklahoma and is now
successfully operating in both fields, with J. H. Ashby as president of the com-
pany, U. S. Dun as vice president and Mr. Thomas as secretary and treasurer.

Mr. Thomas has two children, Clinton and Hugh, both of whom were born in
Denver and are now attending school. He has never been active in club circles nor
has he sought public office but has given his time and attention to his business affairs
and his close application, intelligently directed, has constituted the foundation upon
which he has built his success.


John W. McLean is busily engaged in farming and stock raising and the close
attention which he gives to the development of his property in Jefferson county has
brought to him a gratifying measure of success. Mr. McLean is of Canadian birth.
His natal day was September 11, 1869, his parents being John and Sarah McLean, who
were also natives of Canada and crossed the border into the United States in 1867,
at which time they took up their abode in Michigan, settling upon a farm there.
Both passed away in that state after rearing a large familly of fifteen children, of
whom seven are yet living.

John W. McLean spent his youthful days in Michigan and the public school system
provided him his educational opportunities. He assisted in the work of the home farm
until he attained his majority and in 1892 he came to Colorado, where he secured em-
ployment as a farm hand, after spending one year in freighting and prospecting. He
believed that he might have better opportunities by remaining in the occupation to
which he had been reared and rented the farm upon which he now resides. Pros-
pering in his undertakings, he afterward purchased the place, comprising eighty acres
of land, all under ditch. He now carries on general farming and stock raising and
both branches of his business are proving profitable. His business methods are prac-
tical and his unfaltering industry has been one of the strong basic elements of his

In 1902 Mr. McLean was united in marriage to Miss Florence J. Beckett, a native
of London, and to them have been bom four children, John W., Jr., Randolph J.,
Edward and Ella M. Mr. McLean is a republican in his political views but not an
office seeker. He served, liowever, as water commissioner for eight years and did
excellent work in that connection, for he has closely studied the problems of irriga-
tion and has done everything in his power to promote the fertility of the district by
introducing an adequate water supply here. At all times he stands for progressiveness
in relation to public affairs, and his efforts in behalf of the general welfare have been
far-reaching and beneficial.


There are distinct epochs in the history of Colorado. Settlement began in the
state many years ago but for a considerable period attention was chiefly given to mining
interests and to stock raising. Mining camps sprang up here and there as gold and
other metals were discovered and upon the broad plains the stockman pastured his
herds, but for a considerable period there was little done toward demonstrating the

Online LibraryWilbur Fiske StoneHistory of Colorado; (Volume 4) → online text (page 106 of 108)