Town History

Flagler, Colorado

Early History

Founded in 1888, the town began as a small settlement with a post office and general store, with the curious name of Bowser, named after the  the deceased dog of the the owner of these two establishments.  As the newly built Rock Island Railroad was constructed passing the settlement, the town was mapped and was first named Malowe after the attorney for the railroad M.A. Lowe. Eventually the town was renamed after Henry M. Flagler at the urging of his daughter, who had taken a special liking to this area and was officially incorporated in 1918.  Today, Flagler's many historical landmarks provide visitors with a sense of Flagler's strong history.

 

The Second Central Schoolhouse

 

Constructed in 1915, this rural schoolhouse was originally located 13 miles southeast of Flagler.  Consolidation forced the school to close, as was the case with many schools when rural areas began to further develop.  In 1993 it was moved to it's current location where it is a quaint museum and a peak into the early history of Flagler.

Town Library/Town Hall

 
Listed on the National Registry of Historical Locations, the Town Library/Town Hall was built in 1908 and was originally, for the time and place, a luxurious hotel. In 1937 the hotel was purchased and converted into a hospital by the pioneer of Eastern Colorado surgeon, Dr. McBride.  It became the Town Hall in 1967.  It currently includes a museum upstairs with memorabilia from both the hotel and the hospital.

Hal Borland Room

 
Located in the Town Library, the Hal Borland Room celebrates the life and accomplishments of author Hal Borland, a Flagler native.  The room commerates the author with artifacts donated by the Borland family among others and includes all of the over 44 books written by Hal.  Mr. Borland grew up in Flagler where he began his work as a writer penning articles for the local paper for his father.  He later moved on to not only author many books, but also write for the New York Times.  He passed away in 1978.

 

1951 Air Show Disaster

Tragedy struck Flagler in 1951 when 20 people were killed and many injured in a devastating accident at an Air Show.  A plane attempting a maneuver, the pilot miscalculated and struck scores of people who were lining the streets in large numbers to view the show.  The local park has a memorial for those who passed, many which were children.