Larkspur Historical Society

Cold Springs Ranch Stone Canyon Circa 1893

Cold Springs Ranch

This ranch was also known as:

Ross Ranch

Charlie Brand Ranch

Angus McBane/McIntosh Ranch

Tom Oxley, E.E. Myers Ranch

Tom Oxley Family

Wilbur Dowdy

Judge Leon M. King

Colonel Danks

Mr. Ted J. Weber

William Bromwell

Edward Serrell Ranch

Cold Springs Ranch is located southwest of Larkspur along highway 105 orPerry Park Road. This historic area has seen many families owning and renting the property since about 1893. As the name implies a cold spring was a major and valuable feature of this ranch.

Charlie Brand seems to be the first owner of the property and the ranch at times was referred to as the Brand Ranch as in this example from the book, “Our Heritage People of Douglas County” page 141, John C. Kinner II, written by Jerome E. Kinner.During his early years as a young man (referring to John C. Kinner) he worked on several ranches, but the one most remembered was the Charley Brand Ranch at the mouth of Stone Canyon. John and a couple of other boys drove several hundred head of cattle for Brand from Larkspur to the stock yards in Denver. They spent several days on the road and spent the last night near the University of Denver, then drove them on into the stock yards the next day.” The Brand Ownership also saw hogs being raised.

Then the combination ownership of McBane and McIntosh is referred to as early as 1910. In a Record Journal of Douglas County newspaper article of December 1910, the pair is referred to as sheep feeders and a reference to the pair and their recent purchase of the Chas. Brand ranch is mentioned. In November of 1910, the McBane and McIntosh ranch had improvements made to it when they purchased a lighting system from a plumber from Castle Rock. Pet lambs could be purchased from this ranch for $1 each and also in 1911, the same paper reported that the pair shipped sheep toFortMorgan. Angus McBane also served his community by working as Deputy Sheriff; this was reported in 1912 when he apprehended two young horse thieves near his ranch.

Tom Oxley and E. E. Myers took over the ranch in 1919, but in August of that same year, Mr. Myers sold out to his partner and was reported in the Record Journal of Douglas County to have moved back to Greeley. It seems that this team was back to raising shorthorn cattle, horses and hogs on the ranch. Then in February of 1920 the Record Journal of Douglas County has this article; Cold Springs Ranch Sold; The famous Cold Springs Ranch, three miles southwest of Larkspur, owned by J. T. Oxley was sold this week to Wilbur Dowdy of Monument, who will take possession of the place in the near future.The ranch is one of the best dairy and stock ranches in the county and the new owner made no mistake whatever in securing it.The ranch has, as its name implies, a cold spring of water upon it which alone is worth a fortune to any place. After their sale Mr. and Mrs. Oxley expect to go to Iowa. Although it was reported that the Oxley family were moving to Iowa they were reported to still be on the ranch through October of 1923 with daughters Adele and Doris, spending the summer, attending the movies, fair and graduation exercises. The Dowdy name was not found among the archives and it is not known (at this time) if he actually took possession of the ranch.

May of 1929 is the first time we see Judge Leon M. King mentioned in association with the Cold Springs Ranch. The Judge was from Texas. On April 30th of 1930 the ranch house, contents and all, burned to the ground. The judge vowed to rebuild the house. Judge King moved around 1936 to Steamboat Springs and possibly met or already knew Colonel W. C. Danks, because an article in the Record Journal stated that Judge King traded his Cold Springs Ranch for a ranch near Steamboat Springs and that Colonel Danks and Family, of Steamboat Springs, would be coming to the Cold Springs ranch. Colonel Danks was a former Adjutant General of the Colorado National Guard. For a time, between 1914 & 1920, Colonel Danks lived on a 3,000-acre property close to Larkspur, the property was called the Trust land. The Colonel built a home there and he and his family visited often, treating the property as a second home or possibly vacation home. The Colonel moved to Steamboat Springs in the c. 1920 after finally disposing of his 3,000-acre property at Larkspur.

Mr. Ted J. Weber and family were the next family to be associated with the ranch, but it is unknown whether Colonel Danks sold it to Mr. Weber or just let him use it, as the Colonel and family were also common visitors to the ranch while the Weber family was there. The February 1941 Record Journal printed information concerning a William Bromwell as the next owner of the ranch. Mr. Bromwell was from Denver and a member of the Knights Templar.

It is known that the Ed Serrell Family had possession of the ranch in the early 1940s. Purchased from Colonel W. C. Danks, Colonel Danks leased his Cold Springs Ranch before the Serrell family made purchase. Mr. Edward Serrell, Sr. was president of the Western Aberdeen Angus Association. They raised a registered Angus cattle herd and exhibited at the National Western Stock Show. The Serrell children were involved in 4-H, Junior Colorado Cattlemen�s Association and United States Pony Club.

Today the Cold Springs Ranch is larger, it includes the property that was once the Jerry R. Noe ranch, and cashmere goats are being raised on it.

Information on the Serrell family comes from the book “Our Heritage People of Douglas County”. Thanks to the Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection.

updated 10/2010