Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Globeville Discovery Day

Do you have information that could help us tell Globeville’s story? Stop by and share your memories and historical knowledge about your neighborhood. Information you provide can help the Discover Denver project communicate what makes Globeville, and Denver, special.
If you have old photographs of the Globeville neighborhood, or even of your own house, we’d love to have you bring them to this event. We’ll have equipment on hand to scan photographs and to capture stories. Stop by and socialize with your neighbors, and share stories and memories about Globeville. Refreshments will be provided.

Globeville Discovery Day
Saturday, February 6th, 10 am-1 pm
Holy Transfiguration of Christ Church Hall
349 East 47th Avenue, Globeville
 Discover Denver is a project focused on identifying historic and architecturally significant buildings citywide.
Historic Denver, Inc. and the City and County of Denver are partners in this effort, which is
funded primarily through a Colorado State Historical Fund Grant.
For more information visit www.DiscoverDenver.co, or call 303-534-5288 x3.

¿Tiene información que podría ayudarnos a contar la historia de Globeville? Venga y comparta sus recuerdos y conocimientos históricos sobre su barrio. Información que usted proporcione puede ayudar al proyecto Descubra Denver comunicar lo especial de Globeville, y Denver.
Si tiene fotografías antiguas del barrio Globeville, o incluso de su propia casa, nos encantaría que las traiga a este evento. Tendremos el equipo a la mano para escanear fotografías y capturar historias.
Pase por el evento y converse con sus vecinos y comparta historias y recuerdos de Globeville. Se proporcionarán alimentos.
Globeville Día de Descubrimiento
Sabado, 6 de febrero, 10 am-1 pm
Holy Transfiguration of Christ Church Hall
349 East 47th Avenue, Globeville

Descubra Denver es un proyecto enfocado en la identificación de edificios históricos y arquitectónicamente importantes
en toda la ciudad. Denver Histórico, Inc. y la Ciudad y Condado de Denver son copatrocinadores de este esfuerzo,
cual se financiado principalmente a través de una beca del Fondo Histórico de Colorado.
Para obtener más información, visite www.DiscoverDenver.co, o llame al 303-534-5288 x3.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Little Christmas tradition in Globeville

Globeville's early settlers practiced Christmas traditions from the old country, providing a source of comfort and connection to familiar traditions in their new circumstances. For many, St. Nicholas Day on December 6th meant setting out shoes or hanging a stocking the night before and discovering a small treat, an orange or candy, in the morning. For the Volga Germans, Poles, Slovenes and Croats, Christmas Day was reserved for attending church, visiting family, sharing a meal, exchanging modest gifts and remembering family left behind.
For Greek Uniate and Orthodox Slavs, Christmas Day was a religious holiday, but it was the feast of the Epiphany on January 6th, and the adoration of the infant Jesus by the three kings that was celebrated in a big way. Gifts were exchanged in remembrance of the gold, frankincense and myrrh brought by the Magi, and homes were blessed in honor of the three kings' visit to the home of the Holy Family. After the house had been blessed, the names of the kings, Gaspar, Melchior and Balthasar, were written on the back of the door in chalk.
For Hispanics in Globeville, the 6th day of January, El Dia de Los Reyes, is also an important tradition. The kings pay tribute to the infant redeemer, bring small gifts to delight children and continue a custom many remember from Mexico.

The Magi visit the Holy Family at Holy Rosary
Holy Rosary Parish

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Peter Nazarek and Nettie Homyak wedding photo

In 2014, K Stone wrote, "I recently discovered your blog, Globeville Story. My great-grandfather, Panko Homyak, is mentioned in your post, “Historic Holy Transfiguration of Christ Cathedral.” He was one of the church founders. I have been doing genealogy research and recently received from a distant cousin a November 1901 wedding photo, of a wedding that likely took place in that church. Panko Homyak is in the photo (far right), as a witness. We know the identity of one of the couples, but do not know who the other two couples are. The couple in the center is Peter Nazarek/Nazaryk and Mastazia Chomjah (Nettie Homyak). We contacted the church, but many church records were lost in a flood. I wonder if you would consider posting the photo on your blog, asking if any of your readers can identify those people?"
Some observations: Since the church was founded in 1898, this wedding would have been performed by Father Nicholas Seregelly, a Greek Catholic priest. In the Denver city directory of 1896, Panko Homyak is listed as a cigar maker and may explain his holding cigar in a wedding photos. Is Nettie his daughter? Why is Panko's wife not in the photo?
Does anyone have any information about these couples?
The wedding couple in the center is Peter Nazarek (Nazaryk) and Mastazia Chomjah (Homyak),
and the man on the far right (holding the cigar) is Panko Homyak.
The wedding took place November 3, 1901. Probably at Holy Transfiguration of Christ Orthodox Cathedral, then called Greek Catholic Church, Transfiguration of Christ

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Stories to tell - Discover Denver

Janet Tekavec Wagner explains, “My great grandfather, Conrad Jacoby, and my grandfather John Jacoby, built this house at 4438 Lincoln Street, across from Garden Place School. The entire family, adults and children, worked in the sugar beet fields. My mother, Leah Jacoby, and her four brothers were born there. After they married, my mom and dad, Joe and Leah Tekavec, lived there. I was born in that house. Long after we sold the house in 1990, people still referred to it as the ‘Jacoby House’.”
Every building has a story to tell and Globeville's houses, businesses and churches have been gathering tales for over a hundred years. Do you know the history of your home? Would you like to? Discover Denver, a building and neighborhood survey means to identify historic and architecturally structures citywide. Led by Historic Denver in partnership with the City and County of Denver and History Colorado, the survey will gather information using public records, academic research, neighborhood canvassing, and tips from the public. Findings will be accessible online so that everyone can learn the stories form the buildings in their neighborhood.
To find out more, access survey reports from pilot areas, to volunteer, or offer information about your home, business or church in Globeville, visit www.discoverdenver.co/ or contact bglandon@historicdenver.org
Far right, Janet’s grandmother Mary (Claus) Jacoby holding baby Floyd Jacoby.
Man on porch is her father Conrad Claus, and middle woman is Mary’s sister.
Photo about 1915. Used with written permission from Janet Wagner.

Jacoby house about 1938.
Used with written permission from Janet Wagner.

4438 Lincoln summer, 2014
® Mary Lou Egan

Thursday, November 12, 2015

James Benton Grant

1882 was a momentous year for James B. Grant. In July, ground was broken for what would be Denver's largest smelter, the Omaha and Grant, and in November, Grant would be elected the third governor of Colorado, the first Democrat to hold the office. He was thirty-four years old.
Born in Russell County, Alabama in 1848, Grant grew up in the Old South and served briefly in a Confederate regiment during the final months of the Civil War. With the southern economy in ruins, he set out for Davenport, Iowa and persuaded a well-to-do uncle, also named James Grant, to finance his education. Grant attended Iowa State and Cornell Universities, then the Bergakadmie in Freiberg, Saxony, studying metallurgy and mining.
Following his education, Grant began working as a mining engineer in Central City, but it was in the carbonate camp of Leadville that he would make his fortune and reputation. Examining ore in the region for the Pueblo & Oro Railroad in 1877, Grant visualized the profitability of building a smelter. In 1879, Grant enlisted financial backing from that same uncle, and formed a partnership with Edward Eddy and William James to construct the Omaha and Grant Smelter in Leadville. Processing ore from local mines like Horace Tabor's Little Pittsburgh, the smelter shipped $2,400,000 worth of metals the first year, contributing to Leadville's mining boom and influencing railroads to build to the camp. Grant was well regarded in Leadville, paying investors, suppliers, mining and coking firms promptly. On the night of May 24, 1882, a fire engulfed the Leadville smelter and it burned to the ground. Even as Grant and his associates scrambled to process ore already purchased, they decided to rebuild the plant north of Denver, east of the Platte River and near existing railroad lines. While the smelter was under construction, ore and fuel was shipped from the mountains, ready to be processed as reduction units were completed. The Omaha and Grant Smelter was fully operational by November, just as Grant assumed the office of Governor. Like other politicians in the Gilded Age, Grant was able to devote time to both his role as governor, improving conditions for Colorado's commerce and mining industries, and to the profitable smelting business.
Grant's success in the smelting business brought him considerable wealth, and in 1902, he built a mansion at 770 Pennsylvania Street in Denver. The following year, strikes by the Mill and Smeltermen's Union, outdated methods of reduction and a scarcity of rich ores led to the closure of the smelter. When Grant passed away in November, 1911, his wife remained in their big mansion for six years before selling it to oilman Albert E. Humphreys in 1917. Today, the smelter site is occupied by the Denver Coliseum and the Grant Humphreys Mansion is owned by Historic Denver.

Thirty-four year old James B. Grant, third Governor of Colorado, in 1882

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Death and burial in Globeville

Zombies, coffins, haunted houses - death is entertainment during Halloween, but for Globeville's early settlers, it was a constant companion and wakes and funerals were important rituals.
In the first decades of the twentieth century, the departed was given a three-day send-off with the coffin in the parlor of the family home, surrounded by flowers, and family and friends eating, drinking and sharing memories. Visitors often kept an overnight vigil with the corpse. Before motorized hearses were common, horse-drawn vehicles draped in black fabric with silver trim transported the coffin from the home to the church and then to the cemetery.
One of the largest and most memorable funerals was that of Antoni Benca's (Benson) in 1910. Aside from the sheer numbers, the service was notable because, on the way to St. Joseph's Church, the horses drawing the hearse suddenly refused to go any further in front of Konstanty Klimoski's home on 48th and Washington. The procession was forced to turn around and proceed to the church by another route. The incident contributed to an Old World superstition that the home of prosperous and ostentatious Klimoski was inhabited by a devil. More probable was the explanation that the horses were disturbed by the fumes from the Smith Brothers and Keith tannery on Washington Street.
By the 1920s, the Denver Tramway ran a funeral car from 38th and Walnut Streets to Mt. Olivet (the coffin still had to be transported from the neighborhood to the tramway stop, and then carried by the pallbearers from the funeral car to the gravesite, an uphill walk. Mt. Olivet Cemetery would later provide a wagon to meet the funeral party and carry the coffin). Mourners would then return to the family home for more food and reminiscing. 1.

1. Cuba, Stanley. "A Polish Community in the Urban West", Polish American Studies - A Journal of Polish American History and Culture. Volume XXXVI, Number 1, Spring 1979, pg 48

Antoni Benca's funeral 1910, photo ® Mary Lou Egan

Before Holy Rosary Church was built in 1920, Slovenians and Croatians held wakes and funerals at St. Jacob's Hall at 4485 Logan Street. Photo used with written permission from Alma Mandarich.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Preserving, canning, roasting in Globeville

The Eastern Europeans and Russians who settled Globeville in the 1880s came from humble roots where everything was preserved and nothing went to waste. Self sufficient and painfully frugal, families planted substantial vegetable gardens, as well as raspberries, strawberries, rhubarb, grape vines and fruit trees in their tiny yards. In the spring, asparagus could be harvested along the Farmers and Gardeners Ditch or the banks of the Platte River. (the employees of the Globe Smelter even had a vegetable garden on the grounds of the smelter).
In an era before refrigeration, canning, pickling and salt were a means of preserving food. All summer long, fruits would be canned as soon as they were ripe - cherries in July, peaches and pears in August. Raspberries and strawberries turned into jam, apples into applesauce, while grapes were made into juice, jelly and wine. And there were dill pickles, bread and butter pickles, pickled watermelon rinds, onions, and beets. And, of course, sauerkraut.
In addition to "putting up" fruits and vegetables, people preserved meat in infinite varieties of sausage, pickled pigs feet, head cheese, and pork chops packed in a barrel between layers of salt. Sausage would then be smoked, and all would be stored in a cool cellar.
Today's residents continue the tradition of raising fruits and vegetables, in part, because there is no grocery store in the neighborhood, but also because they enjoy growing their own and preserving their culinary heritage. Tomatoes are still a staple and varieties of chili peppers complement tomatillos, onions, squash, and beans. Chili peppers are then roasted, skinned and frozen for use during the rest of the year.
In the fall, the aroma of smoked sausage rises from "Polack Valley" and the fragrance of chilies roasting throughout the neighborhood are reminders of traditions - of preserving food and your ethnic heritage.

Photo @ Freepik

Photo @ Mary Lou Egan