Visiting the Walling's in Colorado

August 1872

When the party arrived in Denver, a city of 12,000 (WCW, in YI, December 1872), Willie was sent out to find the Walling home. He soon returned to the station in a carriage with Mr. Walling. At the Walling home the White party met two of Ellen's nieces, Mrs. Walling and Miss Mary L. Clough. She described Mr. Walling as "very free and kind," and engaged in a large, profitable lumber business. Being quite well-to-do (letter 25, 1872), he spared no expense to please and entertain them. His lumber mills were some 40 miles west (64 kilometers), at the edge of the Rocky Mountains, but he had his home in Denver so that the children might have the benefit of a school. Instead of staying a couple days, the Whites accepted an invitation to remain for a while.

It was Mr. Walling's business to furnish lumber for the houses, and timbers for the mines in this region. Walling's Mills, near Black Hawk, was not in a steep ravine but in an expansive area above. Here was a cottage that he made available to the White party, and here they lived, read, wrote, and took their walks.

Through the entire month of August the Whites vacationed. They hiked; picked raspberries as they ripened; visited interesting places, such as the stamping mills in which the ore was broken up and then processed; gathered samples of minerals for an exhibit they proposed to set up; and, of course, wrote.