History of Mount Elbert: Colorado’s Highest 14er
Colorado has 58 14ers in the state, but only one is the highest. The highest 14er in Colorado is Mount Elbert at 14,440 feet. Not only is it the highest summit in Colorado, but it's also the highest point of the Rocky Mountains and the entire Mississippi River drainage basin.
We've received a Colorado history lesson and it's all about Mt. Elbert, the highest 14er in Colorado. Mount Elbert is located near Leadville, in the Sawatch Range, according to the Historical Photos of Fruita & Western Colorado's Facebook.
Mount Elbert was named after Samuel Elbert, who according to the Historical Photos of Fruita & Western Colorado's Facebook, was a territorial governor of Colorado in 1873 and 1874. Samuel Elbert was also a Colorado State Supreme Court justice for 12 years.
The first recorded ascent of Mount Elbert was in 1874, and now 147 years later, people are still climbing the 14er. There was a disagreement after the Great Depression regarding Mount Elbert and its neighbor Mount Massive.
The 14ers only differ in elevation by 12 feet and this created an ongoing dispute between which mountain was higher. People who wanted Mount Massive to be higher started stacking stones to make the summit rise, which was only destroyed by Mount Elbert supporters.
Below is a postcard that was mailed in 1952 of Mount Elbert. We really enjoy learning about Colorado's history and can't wait for the next history lesson.