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Steamboat Pilot & Today has been chronicling the history of Routt County since 1885, telling the stories of our community through words and images, and in the process, accumulating thousands of photos that were stored in boxes and filing cabinets in our old Curve Plaza location.

When we began making plans to move to our new offices in the 910 Yampa building, I quickly realized we needed to find a way to permanently preserve all of those negatives, black-and-white photos and old newspaper clippings.

Each folder contained images taken by a Pilot & Today photojournalist along with related newspaper articles and sometimes reporter’s notes — priceless information that offers a unique glimpse into our community’s history.

The sheer volume of these archives threatened to overwhelm me logistically, because I knew our more compact downtown offices would not have space to store them, so I turned to the Tread of Pioneers Museum for assistance.

Museum Executive Director Candice Bannister was immediately interested in perusing our photo collection, and together with the assistance of an archives consultant, we took a quick inventory, and soon after, the Steamboat Pilot Archives Project was born.

The bulk of the collection spans from 1970 to 2001, but there are some pre-1970 original photos that date back as far as 1881. The archive is still being quantified, but the number of printed images surpasses 5,000. The goal of the project is to merge the photos into the museum’s online photo database and make them available to the public.

Each Saturday, we’ll publish a photo from the Steamboat Pilot Archives collection with whatever information we have about the image. These photos are among those the museum is working to preserve, and we hope this new editorial focus will shine a light on Routt County’s rich history.

The Steamboat Pilot Archives Project is a partnership of the Tread of Pioneers Museum and Steamboat Pilot & Today. To support the project, contact Candice Bannister, the museum’s executive director, at 970-879-2214 or cbannister@treadofpioneers.org. Donations can be mailed to the museum at P.O. Box 772372, Steamboat Springs, CO 80477.

From the Pilot archives: 1900s Clark
From the Pilot archives: 1900s Clark

July 12, 2019

Members of the Clark girls basketball team, circa 1914. No identification of the 10 girls was written on the back of the photo. This photo is part of the Steamboat Pilot Archives Project, a partnership...


From the Pilot archives: 1907 Steamboat Springs
From the Pilot archives: 1907 Steamboat Springs

July 5, 2019

Photo of 12 members of the Laughlin family, which ran in the Dec. 8, 1977, issue of the Steamboat Pilot with the caption, “The occasion of this July 31, 1907, Laughlin family portrait was Grandma’s...



From the Pilot archives: 1890 Steamboat Springs
From the Pilot archives: 1890 Steamboat Springs

June 21, 2019

Tom Morgan’s Livery Stable, original c. 1890, reproduction c. 1943; This copy of a black and white photo of two men on horseback and others standing in front of a two-story wooden building was taken...


From the Pilot archives: 1914 Steamboat Springs
From the Pilot archives: 1914 Steamboat Springs

June 14, 2019

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Photo, dated 1914, printed on cardstock with this information handwritten on the back, “Steamboat Springs — 1914/Ray Peck, forest supervisor, feeding elk for the U.S. Forest Service – the elk were eating...


From the Pilot archives: 1979 Steamboat Springs
From the Pilot archives: 1979 Steamboat Springs

June 7, 2019

Photo of Alex Estes in front of the original J.W. Hugus store sign, which was published in the Steamboat Pilot on Feb. 8 1979, with caption: “Handwriting on the wall: J.W. Hugus & Co., one...



From the Pilot archives: Steamboat business advertisements in 1972
From the Pilot archives: Steamboat business advertisements in 1972

May 24, 2019

A black-and-white polaroid photo of an old poster advertising early Steamboat Springs businesses, including Corner Drug, Pupke’s New York Store, Furlong, McWilliams, Chivington’s Livery and Central Feed Barn. The photo was published in the Steamboat...




From the Pilot archives: Winter 1909 near Hahns Peak
From the Pilot archives: Winter 1909 near Hahns Peak

May 3, 2019

Sepia-toned photo of 11 people in the snow outside a log cabin with “Winter 1909” handwritten on the top left corner of the photo. Handwritten at the bottom of photo are the names Bill Starr,...






From the Pilot Archives: Pioneer haying machine
From the Pilot Archives: Pioneer haying machine

March 29, 2019

Black-and-white photo of a haying machine that was published in the Steamboat Pilot on Aug. 16, 1962, with the caption, “Now rusted and weather beaten, this pioneer thresher saw some of the most rugged days...


From the Pilot archives: Stagecoach and riders on horseback
From the Pilot archives: Stagecoach and riders on horseback

March 22, 2019

A stagecoach being pulled by horses with five riders on horses around it, traveling through low brush. If anyone has additional information about this photo, please email Editor Lisa Schlichtman at lschlichtman@SteamboatPilot.com. This photo is...


From the Pilot archives: Crawford cabin in 1881
From the Pilot archives: Crawford cabin in 1881

March 15, 2019

This sepia-toned photo of the Crawford cabin and surrounding land was taken in 1881. On the back of the photo is a large maker’s mark reading “Latour/artistic photographer/1881/Sedalia MO” and the handwritten note, “Cabin and...