History of Montrose

Brown bag program at noon. Doors open at 11:45 am.
Program takes place at Montrose Center for the Arts, 11 S. Park Ave., Montrose. (Corner east Main and South Park, across from True Value Hardware.)

ZillaMay Brown served for 14 years as the president of the Montrose Historical Society and Museum. In 2013, she convinced the Montrose County Commissioners to establish a Montrose County Historic Landmark Advisory Board and currently serves as the chairperson of that board. She authored a book on the city’s history and is a popular public speaker and enjoys sharing her knowledge and love of Montrose.  ZillaMay’s pictoral essay presentations are always fascinating and full of tidbits of local history.

A handout included with the presentation includes Historical Trivia questions, whicih can be discussed at the end of the program. (See below.) Once the program is completed, we will publish the answers for you.

Her book, published under the Montrose County Society and Museum, is available at the Montrose History Museum, in the old depot, downtown Montrose.

Montrose Colorado Trivia Questions

Discover the answers at Zilla May Brown’s presentation, Wed., Aug. 18th at 1 pm.

When was the first settler’s claim driven for the town that would become Montrose?

Which of the following were earlier names for Montrose? Pomona, Dad’s Town, Uncompahgre Town.

Who gave the town the name Montrose?

Where did he get the name?

When was Montrose incorporated? And what was the population then?
What is the population now?

Montrose County was carved out of what larger county?

What other counties were also cut from this parcel?

When did the railroad arrive in Montrose? Was it narrow gauge or standard gauge?

What was the name of the tunnel built to provide irritation water to farmers? What year? Where did the water come from?

Which US President visited for that tunnel’s official opening?

Downtown Main street is very wide. Why?

Highway 550 runs (roughly) north-south and crosses Main Street. What is this road called? And why?

Montrose was originally settled to provide supplies for what industry?

What bright red vegetable became a major agricultural product in the early years?

What building was erected where those vegetables grew, and which provided employment for many farm families once the popularity of that food declined. What was produced in that building.

During the course of its growth, from the early years to the present, what are the three main industries that which developed and sustain this municipality?

2021 History Programs at MCA

2021 History Programs produced by Kathryn R. Burke held at the Montrose Center for the Arts

Tue., Nov. 16. Special Program at MCA. noon-2 pm
Program: Native American History Thru Art & Artifacts. With Kathryn Burke. Native flute music by Julia Reid, November featured artist. Artifact display, handouts, Ute Museum material.

Wed., Oct. 13. History Wednesday at MCA. noon-2 pm
Program: Old Tyme Recreation.With Gail Saunders, Ouray County Historical Society.

Wed., July 14. History Wednesday at MCA. 1-2:30 pm
Program: Railroad History of the Uncompahgre Valley. With Karl Schaeffer, Ridgway Railroad Museum.

Wed., July 21. History Wednesday at MCA. Noon-2:30 pm.
Program: San Juan Mountains Mining & NG RR History.With Kathryn Burke, publisher, regional history books. History of Ouray. With Gail Saunders, Ouray County Historical Society.

Wed., Aug. 18. History Wednesday at MCA. Noon-2:30 pm
Program: History of Montrose. With ZillaMay Brown, Montrose Historical Society.

Sept. 8. History Wednesday at MCA. noon--2 pm
Program: Historic Opera Houses.With Kate Burke and others.