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Montrose - The Angus Town

Montrose is undoubtedly the most redeveloped golf links in the world. No fewer than four golfing areas on the Montrose links Mid-Links, South Links, East Links and North Links have variously been developed and redeveloped, separately and together, and then abandoned or redeveloped.

By about there were 7 holes on Montrose, played in competitions as a round of 17 holes, as detailed in Montrose Club notes of It went north to the Powdery town armoury , curved west and then south to the Bleaching Green on the South Links. At this point the golfers turned round and played 5 holes in reverse, back to the Brander drain cover before turning again to play back to the Bleaching Green.

This made 17 holes in total. By Montrose had 14 separate holes. By , it had 11 holes also played as a round of 17 holes whose names and lengths are recorded on the scorecard of for the Montrose Royal Albert Golf club. Soon after there were 25 holes, including some holes on the South Links, although they were not all played on every occasion. From , the Royal Montrose played 18 holes as a medal, technically making Montrose the second oldest hole course after the Old Course at St Andrews. Although, there have been significant further developments to the layout and location of the course since, several of the opening holes of the present day Medal course are played over the same ground as holes which have been played for centuries.

They play on the Medal Course, shown on the map above, which was redesigned by Willie Park in and which is administered by a Links Trust. The Trust also runs the Broomfield Course, originally laid out as a 9-hole course, but extended to 18 holes in More details of the Montrose clubs are given here. Official Spanish exploration of the Montrose County area began with the expedition of Juan de Rivera in Following a treacherous passage through Dolores Canyon, the expedition proceeded to present-day Naturita, where Rivera and his men camped with Tabeguache Utes.

Montrose County

The area then came under American control in after the Mexican-American War. White settlers were forbidden from prospecting or squatting on Ute lands, and Indian agencies were set up at various places throughout the reservation. In a new agreement in , the Utes near the White River Agency, as well as the Tabeguache and Parianuche, were forced to abandon their lands in Colorado and move to a reservation in Utah.

By most Utes had vacated the area of present-day Montrose County, and white settlers were fast on their heels. Montrose County was established in , carved from western Gunnison County. Though they were supposed to remain outside the county after , some Utes continued to range into Montrose County to hunt, and their interactions with the new Anglo-American settlers ranged from violence to trade. In Bedrock, however, a hotel proprietor known as Mrs. Johnson regularly welcomed and fed Ute hunting parties, and they repaid her hospitality with deliveries of venison.

Of all these early settlements, Montrose would prove to be the largest and most significant on account of its proximity to mining camps in the San Juans, farms and ranches in the Uncompahgre Valley, and its early road and rail connections. In July there were already houses in Montrose, and by the town supported a population of 1, Agriculture quickly became the most lucrative venture in Montrose County.

History and Culture

Cattle ranching was the main pursuit around Montrose and Olathe, along with the raising of alfalfa and other crops thanks to several ditches that were dug in the s. It soon became apparent that the growing number of farms in the fertile Uncompahgre Valley threatened to overtax the waters of the Uncompahgre, which were recharged each year by seasonal runoff and only a small amount of rainfall. Residents in the Montrose area had considered drawing additional water from the Gunnison River since the s, but the steep walls of the Black Canyon presented a difficult obstacle.

In President Theodore Roosevelt signed the Newlands Act, the first program to provide federal funds for reclamation in the arid American West. A delegation from Montrose successfully pitched the Gunnison Tunnel project to reclamation officials in Washington, DC.

Construction on the tunnel, which would finally allow water to flow from the Gunnison to the Uncompahgre Valley, began in On September 23, , to great fanfare, President William Howard Taft presided over the official opening of the 5.

History of Montrose

The Gunnison Tunnel expanded the agricultural capacity of the Uncompahgre Valley by about 80, acres. Major crops included alfalfa, wheat, potatoes, oats, sugar beets , and apples. Area ranchers raised nearly 13, cattle and 28, sheep as well as large numbers of pigs and poultry. While agriculture has been the backbone of the Montrose County economy since its creation, the area also has a rich history of copper and uranium mining. Around Tom Swain, the first store owner in the tiny outpost of Paradox in western Montrose County, discovered a sizeable copper deposit a few miles west of Bedrock.

Instead of developing a mine himself, Swain made sure the news got out and stocked his store with mining supplies.

1562 Montrose - The Schoolboy Golfer

Production fell off thereafter, and the mine changed hands multiple times and operated intermittently between and In prospector Tom Dullan re-staked a previously abandoned mining claim in western Montrose County at the confluence of the Dolores River and Roc Creek. Earlier prospectors had hoped that a yellow mineralization on the sandstone bed was evidence of some kind of profitable metal, but it was not gold, copper, or silver, so the claim was abandoned.

Nobody was able to confirm what the substance was until Dullan sent samples to the Smithsonian for identification in The yellow mineralization was found to be a rare form of uranium and vanadium ore. Around the same time Dullan sent his samples in, European scientists were discovering and researching the applications of the radioactive elements vanadium, radium, and uranium.

All three would come to have various applications in medicine, industry, and arms production. By the claim had again changed hands, and after further testing it was found to be among the richest sources of uranium in the world. The first person to begin extracting the rare ore was Gordon Kimball, an ore-buyer from Ouray who began leasing the claim in In some of those prospectors found carnotite ore, a source of radium, in the same area, and western Montrose County experienced a small boom period of radioactive mining.

This first radioactive metals boom brought more people to the western Montrose County communities of Bedrock, Naturita, and Paradox, with the population of the latter two towns doubling between and Demand for vanadium rose after because it was used as an alloy for steel, and the United States Vanadium Corporation USV began developing vanadium mining and milling operations throughout the state. The company named the town Uravan—a contraction of uranium and vanadium—and by the town had housing for residents, as well as gust housing, a US post office, a theater, medical clinic, store, churches, a school, and a community hall.

Montrose and San Miguel Counties continued to supply uranium for the nuclear power industry from the s to about , when a collapse in prices ended large-scale radioactive mining in western Colorado. Today, agriculture continues to be the main driver of the Montrose County economy. The county currently has more than 1, farms and ranks sixteenth in the state in the total value of its agricultural products.

In Montrose County was the second-largest producer of poultry and eggs in Colorado, and the fifth-largest supplier of cow milk.

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