Day #9 features Badito, Colorado

Badito, Colorado, although it does not amount to much today, is a site deep in history. Situated at a low saddle among the steep and sandy banks of the Huerfano River the site had long been used by Native Americans as a crossing, and in 1709 a Spanish Expedition led by Juan de Ulibarri became the first Europeans to cross the Huerfano River at the spot. In 1779 Juan Bautista de Anza, the Governor of Nuevo Mexico, and his army spent a night at the crossing after they defeated Comanche Chief Cuerno Verde and his braves in a fierce battle nearby.  In 1806 famed explorer Zebulon Pike and his expedition redsted for a few days at the Huerfano crossing as they explored the region.

badito6

One of the crumbling adobes at Badito

By the time the Civil War erupted in 1861,  a small community had grown at the Huerfano crossing, an important stop on the Taos Trail, which included a trading post, saloon, school, blacksmith shop and a ranch. At that time the settlement was referred to as “Boyce’s” or “Boyce’s Ranch” in honor of Bo Boyce who operated the ranch. Bo Boyce was the Anglicization of the French surname name “Beaubois”, and Bo Boyce was descended from French trappers and traders who had long worked the creeks and hills around the Huerfano River. Bo Boyce also had a secret- He was a staunch secessionist, and a member of the Knights of the Golden Circle- The Confederate underground movement, and Boyce used his ranch on the Huerfano to harbor recruits for the Confederate Army as they secretly made their way out of the gold mines of Colorado to join the rebel armies in the southern states. Hundreds of rebel recruits funneled through Boyce’s in the early  days of the Civil War 1861-1863.

badito4

badito2

Following the Civil War Boyce’s was renamed “Little Orphan” for a short time, and had a Post Office under that name. In 1868, the settlement was again renamed “Badito” growing to a peak population of around 100. Until Colorado was granted statehood in 1876, Badito was the county seat of Huerfano County. When the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad decided to run its tracks north of Badito in 1874, and pass through Walsen’s (present-day Wlasenburg) instead, Badito began to fade. Today, only some dilapidated wooden barns, and the crumbling adobe walls of a couple structures remain at Badito, as well as an historical marker telling the history of the site.

badito1

Barn structures at Badito today

 

Check Out My Book- Order Here!

MyBook

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s