Here is a suggested reading list for research into Summit County, Colorado, along with a few personal observations.

A word about Interlibrary Loans.....

For those of you haven't tried "Interlibrary Loan" - it is the greatest thing since ice cream! If you want to read a book that you can't get locally talk to your librarian. Most US libraries participate in the program. Write down the book title, author, and any other details you may have such as publisher. Give it to your librarian and she will order the book in for you. My library charges me between $2-$5 to get any book that circulates in the country. The process usually takes several weeks. The library calls you when it comes in. Usually you can take the book home for several weeks. Some libraries require you read the book on the premises. It depends on the policy of the lending library and the value of the book. Some books are so scarce that they don't circulate.

If you can't obtain your book through interlibrary loan - there is still hope. Make a trip to the Library of Congress in Washington DC some day. They have a copy of almost every book ever published in the U.S. Everyone needs to visit this wonderful repository at least once in their life! And don't forget Ebay - always a good source for obscure books, as is One final place to look - check out the local historical societies - they usually have books and transcriptions available for sale because sale of their transcriptions is one of their major sources of funding.

Tracking the Snow-Shoe Itinerant
Photos by Kent Gunnison
Text by John Dyer
978.845 Gun

The story of Father John Dyer, a Methodist minister and explorer who traveled the Colorado mining camps in the 1860s. Colorado's earliest "circuit rider". Taken from his diaries.

Mining the Summit : Colorado ’s Ten Mile Mining District, 1860-1960
by Stanley Dempsey and James E. Fell, Jr. University of Oklahoma Press 1986
The book includes the names of many Summit County pioneers. It is now out of print, but is available in many Colorado Libraries.
History of the Breckenridge Mining District 1859-1937, by Ed Auge Available through the Summit Historical Society or Hamlets or Webbers Books.
Belle Turnbull, Voice of the Mountains, an Anthology a great poetry book, available through the Summit Historical Society or Hamlets or Webbers Books.
Roadside Summit, Part II, The Human Landscape
by Sandra F Pritchard
978.845 Pri

Southern Summit, A Geographer’s Perspective
by Sandra F Pritchard
978.845 Pri


Century of Faith, St. Mary’s Church, Breckenridge, Colorado
by Mary Ellen Gilliland
978.845 Gil
Details members and history of the Church with members
Dillon, The Blue River Valley Wonderland
by Anna B Emore
Ref 978.845 Emo

A nice history of the town of Dillon, which was moved when Dillon Reservoir was created

Dillon-Denver and the Dam
by Sandra F Pritchard
copyright 1994 The Summit Historical Society
978.845 Pri


Historic Sites in Summit County
By Douglas S Walter
Thesis prepared as a report to the Board of County Commissioners
College of Environmental Design, Univ of Colorado, May 1976

Hard to find

Summit - A Gold Rush, History of Summit Co, CO
By Mary Ellen Gilliland
R 978.845 Gil

An excellent local history

Dyer, Dynamite & Dredges, the Story of a Breckenridge Church and a Colorado Pioneer, (Methodist Church)
by Jane Morton
978.845 Mor
Another nice history about pioneer Methodist Minister, John Dyer
A History of Montezuma, Sts. John and Argentine
by Verna Sharp
978.845 Sha

A nice history book of these ghost towns.

Echoes of the Past: Copper Mountain, Colorado
by Janet Marie Clawson
978.845 Cla

Includes a lot of information about the town of Wheeler and Kokomo, both destroyed.

Frisco! A Colorful Colorado Community
by Mary Ellen Gilliland
978.845 Gil

An interesting and enjoyable local history.

Blasted, Beloved, Breckenridge
by Mark Fiester
978.845 Fie
Thoroughly researched and interesting reading. Photos
Women As Tall As Our Mountains
compilation, printed by Climax Molybdenum Company

Concentrates on the area near the Climax Molybdenum mine, including Kokomo, Wheeler and Copper Mtn.

Lula, a Portrait In Pictures and Prose of a Keystone, Colorado Family
by Mary Ellen Gilliland


Barney Ford, Black Baron
by Marian Talmadge and Iris Gilmore
Riveting! Barney Ford was a runaway negro slave, who worked with the underground railroad in Chicago, built skyscrapers in Denver and Cheyenne WY, operated mining claims, boarding houses, and even built a hotel in Nicaragua. He held up Statehood for Colorado until a guarantee could be obtained that all Colorado citizens would have the right to vote.
Guide to the Colorado Ghost Towns and Mining Camps
by Perry Eberhart


Colorado Postal History: The Post Offices
by William H Bauer, James L Ozment and John H Willard

Contains a lot of information about early postmasters and ghost towns.

Colorado Ghost Towns and Mining Camps
by Sandra Dallas


Colorado Ghost Towns
by Philip Varney


Ghost Towns Colorado Style, Volume 2 Central Region
by Kenneth Jessen


Summit Pioneers, by Alison Grabau New. Collection of interviews and stories told by many of the last remaining contemporary pioneers of Summit County.

Return to Home Page