Posted By danielle on October 30, 2011
We received a lengthy, informative comment from a”Hasty reader”. Thought we would post it so everyone could benefit on some local Hasty history.
A bit of approximate Hasty history for you: My tenuous and unlikely connection to Hasty began in 1963 when I came to work on the H-Bar-Box (Baldwin) ranch with my cousin, Bruce Beckner, who was the Baldwin’s grandson. Adelbert and Dale Baldwin homesteaded their property about 100 years ago. Dale Baldwin was a schoolteacher who, I believe, homesteaded her own property. Then she married Del Baldwin, and they combined their holdings. When I worked at their ranch, they owned a sizable piece of the bottom land a few miles east of Hasty on the south side of US 50, which still had the original native prairie grass growing on it. They harvested that grass in the summer and baled it for winter feed, and they also used that land for winter pasture.
I understand that they had owned several sections of land in the vicinity of that parcel that were acquired by the federal government to be part of the John Martin Reservoir. In addition, the Baldwins had substantial holdings north of US 50 in the adjacent to the Ft. Lyon irrigation canal. That also was where the house, corrals and outbuildings were. You could reach their house by taking the gravel road that ran from Hasty due north to the bitter end, then jogging right just before the canal.
Their son, Francis Baldwin, a decorated WW2 Veteran (Silver Star), was running the ranch when I came in 1963. Del Baldwin died of a stroke that summer; I think he was about 80. In addition to a son, the Baldwins had two daughters, Margaret and Mary Dale. Mary Dale is my cousin Bruce’s mother; her husband was my dad’s brother. Francis Baldwin never married; and, for a time, my cousin, Bruce, was planning to take over the ranch. Sadly, Mrs. Baldwin eventually required expensive nursing care, not covered by insurance, which Francis had to pay for by mortgaging the property. Francis, literally “bet the farm” on cattle prices one year and lost. So, the ranch was foreclosed on; and, after paying off the debt, Francis used the remainder of the proceeds to buy a semi tractor-trailer combination and hauled cattle for a living until he was too old to do so. He spent his last days with his sister Mary Dale and my uncle in Kremmling and passed away probably 10 years ago. Mary Dale still lives in Kremmling, just down the street from her oldest daughter; and I believe Margaret Baldwin still lives in the greater Denver area. I saw both of them when my uncle died in 2009.
So, that’s how a boy who grew up in Washington, DC (and who still lives and works there) came to be in Hasty, Colorado at the age of 14 and spend the summer as a rookie ranch hand. There’s proof of this unlikely story: either that summer (1963) or the next one (when I also came), my cousin, Francis Baldwin and I had our picture on the front page of the Lamar Tri-State Daily news. The reporter was doing a story on coyotes, and he interviewed Francis. I guess he was intrigued by the presence of an Eastern kid . . . and by the fact that my cousin and I have the same name and are about the same age. So, he took our picture in front of a tractor, with my cousin and I looking very “cowboy” in our jeans, jean shirts and straw Stetsons . . . and Francis in a pair of overalls and a baseball cap (because he had been doing some welding).
The last time I visited Hasty was in 1970 . . . Mrs. Baldwin was still alive then and still fixing meals for her son Francis and the hired hands. For what it’s worth, you all have grown since then! I recall, at the time, that the road sign said the population was 90.
I was privileged to know these people . . . true pioneers. You can see the ruts made by wagons on the Santa Fe trail, running through their property, heading west.
Thank you so much, Mr. Beckner, for your detailed and interesting piece of Hasty history. Your words are a nice addition to this website and a good support for the surrounding ranchers in our area. We appreciate your visit; please don’t be a stranger.