You know how it was when you were a kid and your relatives talked about their ancient relatives and the good ol’ days? Well that’s about what I have to work with here. As near I recall of this third hand information, Uncle Bender, was my father’s mother’s uncle on her father’s side (but I couldn't swear to that). His name was English, and so was my Grandmothers maiden name. His real name was actually Benjamin (I think), but apparently everyone called him Bender. No one knows why.
At the Turn of the Century (that is the 20th Century), Bender English was a young man very enthused about photography. He resided in Arkansas somewhere. I probably heard where once, but that is part of the 80 percent of what you hear that you don’t retain. So, Arkansas. I do know he was a schoolteacher from one story I heard, but that might have been after his trips to Colorado.
Around 1909 to 1910 or so, he traveled to Colorado several times. That was before he got married (actually I’m not sure he ever was married, but then I couldn't say he wasn't either). The reasons for his trips have never been clear to me. He may have been going to school. I guess he had a couple of degrees. While he was there he took a bunch of photos, but most of them would be of no interest here. He did travel around on the C&S a bit and in particular the South Park. Somewhere there is a journal on his travels, but the devil if I can find it right now. The photos I’m sharing with you here are of the few days he spent at Bath and the vicinity of Trout Creek Pass. These Photos don’t include anything from the Colorado Midland (too bad) tho I’m sure he took shots of that Railroad too. I have to admit I only have a small portion of his collection. My “other” relatives each got some of portion of it as well.
As I said, in the teens Uncle Bender was a schoolteacher somewhere in Arkansas. I’m not sure what grade or grades he might have taught (not little kids I’m sure). Then around 1918 (he was too old to go to Europe for the war, but may have had some connection to that) he went back east (New Jersey I think) and it was while there, he contracted influenza and apparently didn't survive. His belongings somehow went to my Great Grandfather (his brother) and then some of that to my Dad’s mom. I have other relatives who worked for the C&S around or out of Trinidad on my Dad’s side, but they are all gone too. So I acquired these photos and as many of the railroady shots as I could.
Enjoy his photos!
This is actually a cropping of the previous photo. The Midland tracks would be between the tail of the wye and the trees in the background.
No. 5 is on freight duty in this view and passing under the Midland overpass. We are looking more or less North East.
The tail end of this freight passes under the CM bridge. This view is on the other side of the CM ROW.