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Quality Store: 1940

Quality Store: 1940

September 1940. "General store. Ophir, Colorado, a small gold mining town on the side of a mountain." Photo by Russell Lee for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.


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"Ophir there," as they say

on the other side of the San Juan Mountains.

I've been to Ophir--it's fairly remote and quite inaccessible. It always amazes me to see photos like this from 80 years ago, and to imagine how people carted supplies (and themselves, for that matter) to such a place with limited means of transportation and communication.

[Someday they may invent vehicles which can finally make use of that gasoline pump. -tterrace]

Rock guardian

Beautiful, up to date fuel pump situated in a very vulnerable and awkward to access location. Underground tank filler pipe "protection" is a couple of strategically placed rocks.

It's the stance

I recognized Sailor Jack on the Cracker Jack boxes right away. Then again, I ate so much of the stuff, I was once dubbed the Cracker Jack Kid by a local Five and Dime store owner.

No, we live like this all the time

The owner of the Ophir general store must have received notice Russell Lee was coming to take a picture. The store has a new coat of paint and the stairs and boardwalk are in tiptop shape.

High, low or middling?

"Quality store", sure, but where on the scale from great to not so?

Cat tracks?? No: train tracks...

Tho not apparent here, this store actually fronts on a railroad line


Two boxes, please.

Ruff Times

According to the town's website -- Population: 180 humans, 51 dogs

There must be a cat

Behind the gas pump, because that beautiful little boy in the window is surely captivated by something.

Feline mien

Older gentleman seated in front of the store reminds me of cats in pictures who look toward the photographer as if knowing that they're the main subject.

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