Widgetized Section

Go to Admin » Appearance » Widgets » and move Gabfire Widget: Social into that MastheadOverlay zone

Peruse Pagosa’s past at the historical society museum

By Shari Pierce
Special to The PREVIEW

Photo courtesy Gloria Macht Ray Macht is seen here on his favorite horse at about the age of 9. This was the age he was when he made the comforter currently on display at the San Juan Historical Society Museum. The museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is located at 96 Pagosa St., on the east side of Pagosa Springs.

Photo courtesy Gloria Macht
Ray Macht is seen here on his favorite horse at about the age of 9. This was the age he was when he made the comforter currently on display at the San Juan Historical Society Museum. The museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is located at 96 Pagosa St., on the east side of Pagosa Springs.

Well over 300 people visited the historical society museum in the first week of the season.

You, too, should plan a visit to see all of the treasures housed in the old town waterworks and Job Corps buildings that house the museum.

What will you see?

Artifacts from Pagosa Springs’ and Archuleta County’s past including saddles, tack, an old forge, seed separator, anvil, metal art, a painting of Camp Lewis when it was located in Pagosa Springs, scales, a mosasaur and more. And, that and more are all in the first aisle of exhibits.

A new piece on display is a transit, which belonged to Reef Egger. This is a beautiful brass and glass piece that was likely used in the Pagosa Springs area in its earliest days.

Egger came to Pagosa Springs in March of 1890. Having been in the newspaper business for many years, he put his talents to work here establishing The Pagosa Springs News, which he operated until 1903. Later in that same year, he founded another newspaper in town, The Pagosa Springs Observer, publishing that paper until he moved in 1909 to Bayfield.

The quilts

A fun quilt on display this season as part of the’“Stitches in Time” exhibit is Ray’s Quilt.

This 72×83 comforter was made with wool suiting with flannel backing and batting, probably in 1921.

The blocks were set together by Ray Macht when he was 9 years old and was confined to the house with the measles for three weeks. His mother, Lena, made him put the quilt together as something for him to do.

It is a typical stay-warm comforter made from leftover clothing.

Macht ranched in this community all of his life and was descended from a local pioneer family that settled near Pagosa Springs in 1883. He was very active in the community, serving on many boards.

This antique comforter has been loaned to us by Gloria Macht.

Gift shop

The historical society board has made a great effort this season to expand the museum’s gift shop. The museum relies solely on sales from the gift shop and donations to pay all of its operating expenses.

You are invited to drop in and check out the expanded offerings, which include many items handmade by society members along with books of southwest history interest, quilt patterns and many textiles.

Of course, the historic playing cards done as a fund-raiser are still available. The black and white deck quantities are very limited. Get them while they last.

This deck of playing cards takes on the look of years gone by. Each card face highlights a photo from Pagosa Springs’ past. The cards are designed the way “souvenir” playing cards used to be — printed with oval photos, historical facts and fun information on the face of the card. The back of the card features an early photo of Pagosa Springs’ hot springs.

The San Juan Historical Society works to preserve the past history of our area and to share that history with residents and visitors. This deck of playing cards is one way the Society is working toward education and preservation of history.

The decks of playing cards are available for $10 per deck and may be purchased at the San Juan Historical Society Museum at the corner of U.S. 160 and 1st Street in downtown.

The museum is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m

No admission is charged to view the exhibits. Donations are greatly appreciated.

This story was posted on June 6, 2013.