by Oscar McCollum

About 270 million years ago: the Leadville Limestone formation was deposited in a shallow sea in what is now Colorado.

About 70 million years ago: the Rocky Mountain Uplift began. During this uplift a mass of molten granite rock, “magma”, intruded, uplifted the limestone, and formed the Treasure Mountain Dome. This igneus intrusion heated the limestone and recrystalized it into marble.

In early 1800s: the Ute Indians saw the “white rock” but had no use for it.

1874: Sylvester Richardson, a geologist and founder of Gunnison, visited the present site of Marble and discovered the marble rock.

1874: George Yule, prospecting in the area, later sheriff of Gunnison County, “rediscovered” the marble beds, which were then named Yule Marble.

1879: After the Meeker Massacer the Utes were moved out of Colorado and the area opened to white settlement.

1880: John Mobley, former Indian scout, with his wife and two children, built a cabin at the west edge of Beaver Lake.

1881: W.F. Mason, William Woods, and Mobley founded town of Clarence east of Carbonate Creek.

1885: William D. Parry, John McKay and G.D. Griffith located two marble claims on west side of Yule Creek. * Griffith started blasting marble from the white cliffs on Yule Creek. * On the east side of Yule Creek, L. R. Ligier, E.Jones and J.B. Wheeler filed on marble deposits.

1886: John G. Osgood of the White Brest Fuel Company purchased claims on the east side of the creek, and for ten years did much development of the marble beds. * The name of Rock Creek was changed to Crystal River.

1887: There was much public interest in the marble, with tests showing it had a crushing point of 14,500 pounds per square inch, harder than any marble in the world. * The Denver & Rio Grande Railroad arrived at Carbondale.

1888: Colorado Midland Railroad arrived at Carbondale and had financial interests in the marble beds.

1889: Dr. R.H. Kline and Orlando Metcalf bought marble claims on White House Mountain.

1890: E.E.I. Reyland, and others, had organized the Town of Marble on the west side of Carbonate Creek, and filed for a post office at Marble. * Both Clarence and Marble towns finally agreed to join to make one town, Marble. * A block of Yule marble was displayed at the St. Louis Exposition.

1892: The Colorado Marble and Mining Company started work to develop the marble beds on Yule Creek. * The townsite of Marble was awarded the Post Office which both Marble and Clarence had requested.

1893: John C. Osgood’s Yule Creek White Marble Company sent a large block of marble from the Yule Creek quarry to the World’ Columbian Exposition in Chicago. * The Marble City Water and Power Company was incorporated.

1895: The Marble settlement was incorporated as the Town of Marble, and elected officers. * The Crystal River Stage Line provided daily service between Carbondale and Crystal City.

1895-1897: Marble for the interior of the State Capitol building in Denver was shipped to the railroad at Carbondale by sled and wagon, from the Kelly brothers’ quarry on the east side of Yule Creek.

1897: The Hoffman Smelter and Refining Company erected a smelter in Marble on the south side of the Crystal River at Center Street. The smelter closed in 1901.

1899: The Marble community was incorporated as the Town of Marble, and elected officers. * The Crystal Silver Lance newspaper and the Marble City Times combined to form The Marble Times and Crystal Silver Lance..

1900: The Crystal River Railroad completed a standard gauge line from Carbondale to Redstone. * The Crystal River Mail, Stage and Express Line connected Redstone to Crystal, through Marble..

1901: Town of Marble built its first jail on a lot donated by the Hoffman brothers. James Finley was the first deputy. * John Osgood built a road from Marble to his quarry on Yule Creek, and started shipping marble in 1902. (* The Crystal River & San Juan Railroad built track from Redstone to Marble.)

1904: Crystal River Marble Company opened quarry on Whitehouse Mountain.

1905: Colonel Channing Frank Meek took over the Colorado-Yule Marble Company as president and started building the quarry and mill facilities, including a hydro-electric plant.

1906: The Crystal River Marble Company was organized by I.A. and L.M. Strauss and developed quarries on Whitehouse Mountain, but shipped only a very little marble because of its poor quality.

1907: The first large contract for marble was granted for the Cuyahoga County courthouse in Cleveland.

1908: Colorado-Yule replaced horses and wagons for hauling marble to the mill with a steam tractor.

* St. John’s Episcopal Church in Aspen was moved to Marble and renamed St. Paul’s. * Marble officially became “dry”. * Treasury Mountain Railroad incorporated.

1909: Colonel Meek started to develop a slate quarry but soon quit. * Sylvia Smith started the Marble City Times. * 500 marble workers went on strike for three months, encouraged by the AF of L, but returned at reduced pay when Meek pointed out they worked only 9 hours per day, received nice housing at small cost, and were paid 10% more than Southern marble workers.

1910: “The Big Bear Hunt” was filmed at Marble. * The Yule Marble Company declared a stock dividend. * George Yule, first sheriff of Gunnison County, died in Rifle. * Masonic Lodge No. 137 chartered, and Closed in 1918. * The Elks and the Woodsmen of the World, Camp No. 702 were also in town. * Federal Census reports 782 persons in Marble. * New high school built for $7,000, and donated marble and labor.

1912: Mrs. J. J. Curley arrested for bootlegging. * Bandstand built. * Marble City State Bank organized. * A 500 pound bell installed in church steeple. * Snowslide destroyed part of Mill. * Sylvia Smith gloated in her paper over the damage and was jailed then sent out of town. * Columbia Catholic Church foundation built, building never completed. * Colonial Meek killed by run-away tram. * Bell tower built.

1913: Sylvia Smith won her lawsuit. * One inscribed stone of marble installed at the 290-foot level in the Washington Monument.

1814: Lincoln Memorial contract secured. * Mill enlarged again.

1915: Italian marble workers ordered to return to Italy and join army

1916: Lincoln Memorial contract completed. * The Crystal River Marble Company owned by the Strauss brothers died for lack of good marble, and World War I. * Marble avalanche wall completed along Crystal River. * Supreme Court confirmed Sylvia’s lawsuit and marble company and citizens fined. * 220 children in Marble’s schools. * Marble company declared bankrupt. * Fire destroyed much of town.

1917: U.S. Entered war in Europe. * Colorado-Yule Marble Company ceased operations on April 15. * Most people left town. * The Marble Booster ceased publication.

1921: Yule Marble Company of Colorado incorporated and bought the mill and railroad. * The Mormon Church of Missouri, formed the Colorado White Marble Company, bought and reopened the old Strauss Quarry, and by 1926 dug a tunnel 450 feet into Whitehouse Mountain, but no marble shipped.

1922: Carrara Yule Marble Company incorporated and bought the quarry. * Quarry and Mill were refurbished, and joint operations began.. * The C.R. & S.J. Railroad was put into operating condition. * Over 450 people in Marble, 200 working in the mill, quarry and railroad.

1923: Federal Marshals confiscated two stills and gallons of liquor. * William Walter Woods, founder of Marble died. * A fire destroyed several buildings in Marble.

1924: Yule Marble and Carrara companies joined as Consolidated Yule Marble Company; business improved. Later, J.B. Jones leased the property and incorporated the Tennessee-Colorado Marble Company.

1925: A fire destroyed 900 feet of the mill.

1927: Jacob F. Smith purchased the Consolidated property.

1928: Jake Smith sold one-half interest in the Consolidated property to the Vermont Marble Company and renamed it the Yule Colorado Company.

1929: Smith sold his remaining interests to Vermont Marble Company.

1930: Received contract for the Unknown Soldier’s tomb. * Marble population, 500, 200 employed in quarry and mill.

1932: Tomb block installed in Arlington Cemetery. * Sylvia Smith died in Denver.

1941: Quarry and Mill ceased operations in November. * Severe mud flow in Carbonate Creek destroyed center of town.

1942: Morse Brothers Machinery Company demolished tram line and mill building for scrap.

1943: Tracks of C.R. & S.J. Railroad removed. * Treasury Mountain Railroad tracks removed. * Post office in Marble closed.

1945: Another big mud flow hit Marble.

1952: Basic Chemical Company organized to grind scrap marble, but closed in 1954 because of high shipping costs. * Summer Prayer Meetings started in St. Paul’s Church by the Loudermilk sisters.

1957: First airplane landed on the “Marble International Airport” built by Crystal River Enterprises. * Beaver Lake Lodge constructed.

1958: Gunnison County improved county #133 road between Marble and Crested Butte.

1959: Mrs. Theresa V. Francis published the Crystal River Saga.

1962: Outward Bound School opened on Lost Trail Creek. * Marble Community Church started program of inviting visiting Ministers during summers.

1963: Vermont Marble Company showed interest in reopening the Yule marble quarry.

1971: Marble Ski Area started; closed in 1975.

1973: Town of Marble reactivated and officers elected.

1974: Marble Community Church moved back into St. Paul’s Church building.

1977: Marble Historical Society organized and began publishing Marble Chips. * Old Bell Tower fell in a storm.

1979: The Marble Mill Site was declared an Historic Site and is now on the National Register.

1980: Marble Water Company organized and new water lines installed in town.

1981: The Millsite Park purchased by the Town from the Small Business Administration. A Volunteer Fire Department organized.

1982: The Marble Fire House built and voters approved joining the Carbondale and Rural Fire District.

1983: Community Church incorporated.

1985: Marble Community Church purchased building from Episcopal Diocese. * The High School Building was donated to the Marble Historical Society by the Gunnison Watershed School Board.

1987: First Old Timers reunion, 100 attended.

1989: First marble sculpting symposium. * A new concrete and steel bridge was built over the Crystal River on the quarry road.

1990: Yule marble quarry reopened by Tracy Dunn and Rex Loesby as Colorado Yule Marble Co. The Quarry Road was rebuilt by the marble company.

1991-93: County Road #133 rebuilt.

1992: Bank building renovated.

1993: Route #133 through Marble chip/sealed. * Telephones converted to single-party lines.

1995: Charter School organized. * Renovates High School building/Museum with grant funds.

1999: Bank building put on the National Register of Historic Places.

2009-10: Bell Tower rebuilt.

2009-10: Charter School builds new building.