Slag pile at Waneka Lake a shadow of its former self

The Interurban Power Plant at Waneka Lake shown operating in about 1920. The 3-story pile of slack coal and other debris from the Electric coal mine, also containing coal ash from the power plant, can be seen at left, on the south side of the plant.

The large, lava-like boulders on the southwest corner of Lafayette’s Waneka Lake, about 100 yards south of the boat house and picnic structures, are remnants of the sizable slack coal dump from the Electric/Summit coal mine that operated from 1898 to 1918. The former Northern Colorado and Interurban Power Plant that operated from 1906 to 1924 also dumped coal ash at the site.

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State records show that the Simpson mine was probably Lafayette’s first mine

“THE SIMPSON MINE
This mine has been opened during the past year (1888). It is a shaft opening. The coal vein is fourteen feet in thickness. The mine is equipped with all modern appliances. A compressor plant is in operation, running five of the Harrison coal mining machines, which work very successfully.

In the future it is expected that this mine will figure among our largest producing mines. The company expects soon to sink another shaft, which will be used as a hoisting shaft, as well as complying with the law in using it as an air shaft, as it will be connected with their present hoisting shaft. This mine is owned by Mr. Simpson and sons.

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The Kneebone Dairy and the Home Dairy

Two early dairies in Lafayette that delivered milk door-to-door were the Kneebone Dairy and the Home Dairy. Kneebones delivered raw milk while Home Dairy delivered pasteurized milk.

The Kneebone Farm was at the corner of 111th Ave. and Arapahoe Road, but the Kneebone Family maintained their dairy herd of 40 to 60 head in the fields along the north side of E. Elm Street in Lafayette. Home Dairy bought milk from area dairy farmers.

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Historic Preservation: Lafayette’s first jail still standing

A nondescript garage on the alley of 500 E. Cleveland St. is Lafayette’s first jail and town hall. The building, built about 1894, is 15-feet wide on the gable ends and is constructed of soft bricks that are now covered with stucco. It has a corrugated roof placed on top of cedar shingles. There are anti-splay bolts showing on the exterior near the eaves on the north and south side. Anti-splay bolts are common in brick buildings that are/were showing signs of instability.

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