Friday, March 20, 2009
General Grant Stopped Here
I had heard this story before but had never seen a written account of it. I found it this week mentioned in a book about Broomfield history, of all places, called "Broomfield: Changes Through Time" by Silvia Pettem.
The year was 1868 in Burlington, Colorado - a small stage stop on the Cherokee/Overland Trail, on the St. Vrain River. A dignitary party arrived in two stage coaches, consisting of General Ulysses S. Grant, Schuyler Colfax, and Civil War Generals William T. Sherman, and Phillip H. Sheridan. School was let out early that day so that everyone could see the famous visitors arrive.
The party then went inside to have a meal at the Burlington Stage Stop, which was run by Mrs. Mary Allen. On his visit, General Grant picked up the eight year-old son of Mary Allen, named Alonzo, and asked him a few questions about how he liked the wild West.
A year later, Grant was the US President with Colfax being his Vice President. Sherman (a name that I would still mention carefully when I'm in the deep South) stayed in the Army until 1884. Sheridan also remained in the Army for a long time, until 1888 when he died. Alonzo went on to become foreman in the Longmont canning factory.
Today, the original Burlington site (and location of Grant's dinner) in south Longmont is remembered with a small monument and a plaque:
The picture is clickable if you want to read the plaque: