The citizens of Irvington [a town east of Lafayette along Coal Creek] are to be congratulated. Their petitions against the establishment of a saloon in their territory last spring went unheeded by the [Boulder] county commissioners, and their desire for a clean moral atmosphere about their residences near the coal mines were set at naught. They were derided as puritanical for their efforts to shield their children from contamination so far as lay in their power.
The saloon was established. All the evils they had predicted came true, as a matter of course. The wages that should have gone into many homes were wasted in drink. Carousals that made nights hideous and out of door life insecure followed each pay-time. Complaints were apparently ignored, and matters went from bad to worse. Not content with the patronage from the regular drinking element of the floating population about the mines, the saloonists, as is the usual custom in that business, cast about for bait to entrap the unwary youth of both sexes. Women from Denver, of the class whose “footsteps take hold in hell,” were imported to entice and fleece the patrons. Being unmolested, the orgies became open and unprintable.
Last Saturday night came to a climax. The [Lafayette] law and order league had quietly gathered evidence sufficient to convict, and Sheriff Bartell, with a posse partly picked from Lafayette, made a raid and found an open saturnalia in full blast on Sunday morning. Caught in the act, the two proprietors pleaded guilty of keeping a disorderly house when before Judge Gamble of Boulder next day. The judge promptly gave both a jail sentence of thirty days each.
Good people in Lafayette heartily commend the judge for imposing a jail sentence in lieu of the usual paltry fine. It will do more to discourage law breaking than any other course that can be adopted. It will be a wholesome lesson to others in the county.
While Irvington is to be congratulated on its clean-up, Lafayette can rejoice also. For it is to be confessed with humiliation that among the seventeen men found in the place and let free because of the shame and mortification their exposure would entail upon their innocent families, were a number of Lafayette citizens. We give for what it is worth the claim of the convicted men that the raid was instigated by their rivals for drawing away this class of custom. Good citizens are more intent on preventing these immoral practices than they are on a division of spoils of inequity.
From the Lafayette News-Free Press, Feb. 7, 1908.