Grand Lake, Colo. June 8, 1940
Mr. Raymond Gregg
Nat'l Park Office
Dear Mr. Gregg:-
I told you over here at the AAA banquet that I would write you
the story of Dutchtown, as told to me by an old fellow that was in Dutchtown
at the time of the boom. His name was Andy Aerhart. This story was told to
me in 1919 at Grand Lake.
The following is the story of Dutchtown, located in Hitchins Gulch, in the
Never Summer Range. At the head of the North Fork of the Colorado River.
There seems to be considerable difference of opinion as to the actual dates
of the life of this little settlement, but 1879 to 1884 will take in the
beginning and the end of this town.
Of course Lulu City was really established before Dutch Town, and Dutch
Town was eventually to become a suburb of Lulu City.
It seems that even in those early days, the different nationalities were
prejudiced against the others. The Dutch, Irish and the Swedes.
When Lulu City started each of these picked out their section of the City.
There were eight dutchmen lived in one corner of the City. One day they
went to Grand Lake and returned in the night sometime pretty well under the
influence of liqor and proceded to eliminate some of the other races of
people of Lulu City.
With the result that they were completely and soundly beaten, their houses
wrecked and some of them had to have medical aid.
Some of the more peaceful citizens of Lulu City were pretty badly damaged
including one woman who came out of the fracas with a broken arm, one man
with several broken ribs, and one fellow lost an eye.
Lulu's father, who by popular consent has always been the mayor of Lulu City
demanded that they all be run out of town, and that no more dutchmen be
allowed to build or live within the limits of Lulu City.
As soon as the Dutchman were able to be around again they were all called
together and told what the score was, and they believed it.
Consequently with many misgivings they left Lulu City and started up the
gulch where Mr. Hitchins had a claim, and a cabin.
About two miles above Mr. Hitchins claim they decided on a sight and camped
and immediately started to build.
During the next two months they had plenty of trouble.
Some of the men at Lulu City were holding a grudge, and several times the
Dutchmen were firedoon from the hills surrounding their little village.
One man being hit in the leg by a bullet.
They even went so far as to start a rock slide above the village hoping that
it would wipe out the village and the men in it.
But the Dutchmen stuck and a natural barrier sprang up between them.
There is a small ridge between the Colorado River Valley and Hitchins Gulch
and this was declared as the deadline, and it wasn't considered safe for
either side to venture across this ridge.
Thereafter if the population of Dutchtown had any business anywhere outside
their little village they either had to go to Grand Lake or the little town
of Gaskil, located at the mouth of Bowen Gulch, that was going strong at the
While nobody ever hit any ore that made them any money the settlement at
Dutchtown stuck some six months to a year longer than at Lulu City, and Mr
Hitchins stayed with his claim about twenty years longer.
Sdg/ Cloyd Redburn
Grand Lake, Colorado