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Thread: Viola, CO

  1. #1
    Super Moderator RR-Guy's Avatar
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    Viola, CO

    Viola, CO


    The above image is from a 1951 topographical map.


    Viola was just south of Cokedale and has two inactive mine shafts. If established in the early 1900's it would have been next to the Trinidad Trolley system going to Cokedale. As far as I know these two mines were not part of the Cokedale mines.

    In 1998 I was near this location taking pictures of the old highway bridge and the viaduct that the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad used in it's transportion of coal/coke to/from Cokedale, but didn't know of Viola at that time. The Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad bridge to Cokedale from the Colorado & Wyoming tracks was located just above the "31" in the lower right quadrant of the above map on the dotted line. This dotted linee indicates the old D&RGW Railroad grade. That railroad bridge was known to the local residents, as the "red", or "camel back" bridge.

    The Colorado & Wyoming Railroad has always been located where shown on the above map. Along the southern side of the Purgatoire River Valley.

    Can anyone provide information about Viola? Thank you.
    :)

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RR-Guy's Avatar
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    Viola, CO

    Reflections of Viola from TrinidadCo member BBACA;

    http://www.trinidadco.com/forum/show...php/4349-viola


    Information on one of the inactive mines.

    Viola (old) - Owned and operated by Johnson Coal and Coke Co, 1911-1915

    Link to PDF file of Greg Lewicki's information above;
    http://tinyurl.com/2jup7a
    Link for HTML file of Greg Lewicki's information above;
    http://tinyurl.com/2ucsj2


    Last edited by RR-Guy; 03-09-2010 at 08:53 PM.

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    After my Grandparents sold the ranch in Longs Canyon, they opened a grocery store and gas station in Viola. It was a Phillips 66 station on highway 12. "Viola Service Station". Their names were Mike and Angelina Niccoli.

    I'm not sure how many families lived there. I do remember some of their names. Garcia's, Tapia's, Vigil's, Ortega's, Salvatore's and more.
    The men who lived there were coal miners but worked further up the river at the mines in Valdez.

    I don't know if any of us ever knew there were mine shafts in the area.

    The homes were built off of highway 12 with the Purgatorie River running off in the distance and the railroad line.

    I do remember the Gypsies that use to come up to Viola in the summer and camp down at the river every year.

    It was a small community with very nice neighbors who were always ready to help one another.

    I doubt their are still families around who could tell you more about Viola.

  4. #4
    Super Moderator RR-Guy's Avatar
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    Elaine.

    Your information on Viola is greatly appreciated. Thank you. :)

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    RR

    I forwarded your map to my Aunt in California. She lived in Viola with her parents that owned the Viola Service station.

    She said there were two mines called Wagon Mines. These mines weren't owned by anyone. Men would work these mines and sell the coal to the people. One mine was East of Viola and the second was even with Viola.

    Cokedale had two mines one East and one South another mine was in Bon Carbo and in Gulnare.

    Frank Coke who at one time owned a service station in Trinidad was a Wagon miner.

    I don't know if this will help.

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    Elaine,

    Yes, that also helps. Thank you again. :)

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    quote:Originally posted by alice romero

    Viola was located about 7 miles west of Trinidad on Hwy. 12. It was the last little community before you would exit the highway to go to Cokedale.

    It no longer exists due to the contruction of Trinidad Lake.

    Many large families lived there with men who mostly were miners.

    The children who lived in Viola had to catch the bus to attend Cokedale which served as the elementary school. After Cokedale the kids had to either go to Sopris, Primero, or Trinidad High.

    Businesses in Viola were: The Viola Club (Bar) owned by Alfonso and Elsie Vigil. The Cabana Bar owned by Isacc and Lucy Duran. Nicolli's Gas Station owned by Mike Nicolli (?). Ralph Salas later leased the Viola Club.

    Some of the families that lived in Viola were: Romero, Arguello, Montoya, Baca, Garcia, Duran, Cuccia, Gonzales, Vigil, Tapia, and Nicolli.

    The school bus driver was Charlie Gomez.

    Alice
    Thank you Alice. :)

  8. #8
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    I am replying to Alicia Romero's discussion on the people who lived in Viola. The Cuccia's did not live in Viola, they lived in Sopris Plaza. The Kucher's did live in Viola and had cattle. The gas station was called the Viola Service Station and the owner was Mike Niccoli. I too lived in Viola for a few years and Mike Niccoli was my Grandfather. The Cuccia's are my first cousins.

  9. #9
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    Thank you Elaine for the correction.

    Alice

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