Cement sidewalks and a new bank


In 1906, the Pagosa Springs town board ordered a cement sidewalk built on Pagosa Street. Prior to this order, all sidewalks downtown had been built of wood.

And in May of 1908, the town board discussed what actions should be taken as a result of loss of the money deposited at The First Bank of Pagosa Springs. The bank had failed, not through local mismanagement, but because the parent bank in Denver had failed. Pagosa Springs was again without a bank.

Already in January of 1908, The Pagosa Springs New Era had announced, “Fred Catchpole, former cashier of First State Bank of Sterling, Nebraska, one of the soundest banks of that state, was here visiting his friends Dr. and Mrs. DeMotte, and investigating conditions with a view to starting a bank at Pagosa if the place suits him and our people think he suits the place. Mr. Catchpole made The New Era a pleasant visit and assured us that he was not here to ‘butt in’ on any efforts of the home people to start a bank, but that now since the agreement had done away with any probability of another bank being started on the assets of the first bank, he felt at liberty to start a bank with the co-operation of home people if he and they felt so generally inclined. Mr. Catchpole seems to be a man worth much to any community and The New Era hopes he will be encouraged to become one of us.”

Catchpole’s new bank, called The Citizens Bank of Pagosa Springs, Colorado, commenced business March 1, 1908. It remains as one of the oldest businesses in Pagosa Springs still operating under the same name. A.J. Nossaman was the first president, Fred Catchpole the first cashier, and J.S. Hatcher the first vice president.

Citizens Bank opened business in the same building on the south side of San Juan Street that had housed The First Bank of Pagosa Springs. A two-story brick building was begun almost immediately on the northwest corner of San Juan and Pagosa Streets. Completed in 1909, the same building housed Citizens Bank until the late 1970s. Like the old town hall across the street, Citizens Bank became a community landmark and survived several disastrous fires.

Down through the years, its list of stockholders reads like a who’s who of important Pagosa Country community leaders, especially including the Catchpoles.