Larkspur Historical Society

Ranch Fred Z Solomon Circa ~ 1885

Salomon Ranch

Fred Z. Salomon
Salomon Brothers
Salomon Gas, Oil and Coal Company

Fred Salomon was involved in Colorado politics and is seen in the newspapers as early as 1862. In 1876 Fred Salomon succeeded David Moffat as Colorado Territorial Treasurer.

Mr. Salomon soon was buying land in Douglas County a majority of this property later became the Greenland Ranch. In 1885 he was having fencing placed around his land, which seemed to cause some problems as the Castle Rock Journal of July 1885 suggests:

“The road question is settled and the law suit will take place. The outlet to the north will begin at the southeast corner of M. D. Moorhead’s ranch and intersects with the road running west from Greenland, thence north along Moorhead’s east line to the northwest corner of the old..odgett (Blodgett) place, then in a northeasterly course to the old Territorial Road. Salomon will allow damages and no further trouble is expected.”

The “outlet” refers to leaving an opening for surrounding properties to the Salomon ranch. A Mr. Smith was hired to do the fence work; his men dug post holes, left access for the railroad and put up gates to allow other ranchers an outlet. A surveyor, also, was called out to make sure the boundary made by the fencing was accurate.

In 1888 Fred Salomon died but this was not the end of the Salomon’s owning the land. A company was formed by the name of the Salomon Improvement Company. The Salomon Brothers, of which we do not know specific names, were business men in Denver. They organized the company for the purpose of boring for coal, oil and gas on the property. This property was reported in the Castle Rock Journal as comprising about 5,000 acres. The Journal reported:

“The company will have $200,000 capital to work with. They have full faith in finding the coal and oil in any event, and hope for the gas.”

H. Z. Salomon was anxious to get started with boring activities and finding deposits of coal, oil and gas or all three. The 1889 Castle Rock Journal reported the following:

“The following is taken from the prospectus of the Salomon Improvement Company: The scientist connected with the recent geological survey made by the government hold to the opinion that natural gas is yet destined to be an important production of Colorado. They say that ‘while there are evidences in many localities in Colorado that natural gas exists, the quantities heretofore found have been too small to be of value. In the widespread coal fields of the state there are various points at which a little gas naturally escapes; but so far no one has had courage to undertake borings with a view to finding larger quantities. The field is practically unexplored, and what it may produce as a result of boring cannot be guessed.’

‘At Greenland, a station on the Denver & Rio Grande railroad, about forty five miles south of Denver and near Palmer Lake, the surface indications are excellent that oil, coal and gas exist in rich quantities; and such is the opinion of the experts who have examined the land.’

No prettier body of land to look upon can be found on the eastern side of the Rockies. The soil is rich and productive; producing without irrigation oats, potatoes etc., in paying quantities. Running springs abound, and excellent water is found inexhaustible in quantity and in places only twenty feet in depth.”

This ranch became the Greenland Ranch and finally the Greenland Open Space.


Salomon Ranch land.

Thanks to the Colorado Historic Newspaper Collection.