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Sunday, May 1, 2022

Where Did the Time Go, and Have Things Changed?

 Post by Doris McCraw

writing as Angela Raines

May 1, 2022.  Where did the time go? Seems like just yesterday we were celebrating the New Year. Now, here it is May Day and things are greening up outside, allergies are kicking in, and the days are getting longer.

I started looking into some older news publications with the thought of seeing if they celebrated May Day in the early days of Colorado. I was sidetracked by this article from "The Daily Herald and Rocky Mountain Advertiser, Volume 1, Number 1, May 1, 1860. (Denver, Denver County, CO) Although quite long, I thought I'd share the first couple of paragraphs.



LADIES and GENTLEMEN: — No more profitable subject of inquiry and speculation can engage the attention of the human mind than that of the gradual advancement of society from a state of barbarism to one of civilization; and it is a pleasing labor to trace, either in bold outline or minuter detail, the causes that have operated most powerfully in working out that advancement.

The student of history is aware that the contest has been long, severe and doubtful between the opposing elements of progress and retrogression — that sturdy barriers of prejudice and passion had to be broken down — that the dogmas of arrogant schools of philosophy, the superstition of religious systems, the opposition of tyrannical rulers, the hatred of the strong and the fears of the timid, have from time to time arisen in fierce antagonism to principles — that the human mind naturally dwells with satisfaction upon its immediate achievements, and views with distrust and suspicion any innovations likely to mar the harmony and certainty of established customs — that the wealth of the noblest intellects has been exhausted, and lives as chivalric as ever made battle-field glorious by their warrior death have been sacrificed, and that still, like the ebbing and flowing of the sea has been the wondrous tale of human improvement. Aye, like the great ocean itself has been the history of man's progression from the mythical days when the first rays of intellect flashed forth ever the chaos and night of universal ignorance to the present time. Now, rolling forward in grand and majestic tide, bearing down before its impetuous sway all opposing objects — the image and the embodiment of resistless power; and now, vexed by tempests end torn by conflicting winds, the waters have rolled backward on their course, rivaling the wildness of confusion, and terrible in their tumult and disorder. Yet notwithstanding the bigotry, the fanaticism and the opposition of men and systems, the jargon of timid sophists and the hatred of despotic governments, its course has been on the whole toward the consummation of a more perfect civilization.

In searching into the causes that have tended most to the attainment of the present advanced position of society, there are none that more readily strike the attention, enlist the enthusiasm and call forth the prouder feelings of our nature, than those revealed by an examination of the influences of literature and the finer arts.

Early Photo of Denver, 1860 
University of Northern Colorado

I found the article both interesting and maybe a little surprising. Denver had only been in existence for about two years. This tells me that there were people who were interested in not only literature but the arts also. I think sometimes we forget that part of the early civilization of the West.

Until next time, be safe, have fun, and keep writing. If you wish to read the full article, hopefully, the below link will take you to the digitized original.

Colorado Historic Newspapers

Doris McCraw


  1. Very interesting. I enjoyed the language and the way it was written.

    1. I always find the way things were written in the past fascinating also. Doris

  2. An interesting insight into the community and the society they hoped to build for the future. Thanks for sharing.

    1. My pleasure. I find that while fine points were different the desires are still a lot the same. Doris

  3. Thanks for sharing, Doris. As you say, the more things change, the more they stay the same. One can gain so much from studying old newspapers. I always love the adverts and the photos in them.

    1. As you can tell, I love the old papers also. The adverts and photos give a glimpse into that things were like, and how they looked. I'm glad you liked it. Doris

  4. Thanks for sharing this. I, too, love reading old newspapers for the language and the world view. I really enjoyed your post.

  5. Thank you. The old publications offer a wealth of information. I am glad you enjoyed this one . Doris