In the late 1800's the town of Gillett sprung to life a few miles north of the mining communities of Cripple Creek and Victor, Colorado. But rather than minerals, Gillett is mostly famed for moments, an event of August 1895... the only bullfight ever to take place on U.S. soil. The event was highly publicicized. Celebrities from afar traveled for the first-ever event. Bullfighters and bulls were imported for the event from Mexico. A bullfighting ring was constructed. And it ended... with a near riot. Some believe the bulls were tired from the travel. I guess they didn't put up much of fight, and that's what the spectators wanted. The meat was donated locally which appeased some of the locals. Nevertheless, never has there been a bullfight in the U.S. before, and since.

Here's the bullfight ring constructed for the event...


An empty meadow today...


The action in the ring...




Now this actually was quite a sizeable town 120 years ago...


Hardy residents called Gillett at 10,000ft. elevation home. Seemingly every time I pass through on a bike I am chilled. The barbed wire fence here, and behind me prevented a slightly better "now" perspective...


So what has happened to this ghost town? Things were in decay the early 1900's, but the coup de grace came in June 1965 when most of the ghost town structures were swept away after a heavy rain overwhelmed a small earthen dam reservoir that supplied water to the residents long ago. Here's the Catholic Church out in the suburbs of Gillett back in the 1940's...


Following the flood 47 years ago. Didn't want to disregard the "no tresspassing" sign, nor risk sensitive body parts to the barbs!, so from a distance. Some rocks of the church remain...