Forgotten history of Mormons in Mancos

In regards to the idea Mormons played a huge role in building the early Mancos community, it is true many Mormons settled in Webber Canyon. But also at least one settled in Echo Basin. My great-great-great-grand mother, who owned a dairy farm there, for instance.

She ended up donating her land to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which the church used to build a lake for irrigation. What is sometimes forgotten about the history of Mancos, is the Halloween incident in which many Mormons in the Mancos were forcibly evicted from the area.

Some people would just chalk that up as good old 1930s racism. I for one am more practical. Most forced evictions of Mormons through history tend to happen about the time their irrigation is finished. And most forced evictions are due to wanting one resource or another. Then again we all know how well religions tend get along.

A nice advertisement can be found in the Main Street courthouse just south of what used to be the DMV hanging on the wall. It is for cheap land in Webber Canyon with — and hold your hats on ranchers — free irrigation with purchase!

Colin Kinkade

Mancos