It would like to be noted that permanent settlement in Teller
County occurred around 1870 and was at the summit of the Ute Trail in what is
now Divide. As the tracks of the Colorado Midland Railroad neared Divide in
1887 boarding houses, saloons and restaurants sprang up to meet the demand of
railroad workers. Woodland Park, originally called Manitou Park along the Midland
Railroad tracks and was quickly discovered by tuberculosis patients looking
for a place to recover. The town became a popular spot for pleasure seekers
and train passengers when the new Harvey House was opened in 1890.
In 1890, a cowboy and part time prospector named Bob Womack
discovered Gold in Cripple Creek. This discovery forever
changed the area which was to become Teller County. The gold mining operations
required a great deal of outside support and several areas came to the rescue.
Woodland Park had 5 saw mills producing millions of feet of lumber per year,
much of which was timber for the mines. 200,000 railroad ties were shipped out
annually. Divide was also an important lumber and supply town, but also became
known for its high-quality, disease-free potatoes and for its fine crops of
lettuce. Each fall, produce was crated and shipped to Cripple Creek and other
locations around the United States. Ice to keep lettuce fresh while being transported
was cut from ponds in and around the area.
By 1900 more than 50,000 people called "the district"
home. "The district" refers to the entire gold mining area (approximately
3 square and includes Victor, Cripple Creek, Goldfield, and many towns which
have disappeared. The value of the gold mined in Teller County is greater than
all other gold mining operations ever conducted in the United States combined.