by Bob Kisken, Glenrock, WY
Ouray, Colorado, is located in the San Juan Mountains.
It’s a tourist town now, but at one time it was surrounded
by gold and silver mines. In 1883 a livery barn was built in
Ouray. This stable still stands and is now the site of the
Ouray Mule and Carriage Company. This business was started
by Tim and Lezah Saunders about five years ago.
During the vacation season you can enjoy a tour of Ouray in carriages drawn by a team of Belgian mules with Tim giving an on-going commentary about the historical sites throughout the town. Tim told me he learned a lot by giving rides to the older citizens of Ouray, and listening to the stories they had to tell. Tim also is a farrier, and is a gold card holder of the PRCA.
Lezah’s family has owned the livery barn since 1944. Her grandfather, Samuel L. Fellin came to Ouray from Italy in 1902 when he was 13 years old. He and his brother operated the Fellin Brothers Mule Packing business in the early 1900’s, which brought supplies by mules into the surrounding mines.
The buggies they use in their business were purchased in Nashville, Michigan (www.buggy.com).
Tim and Lezah are keeping the relationship between mules and Ouray alive. For more information on their operation go to www.ouraymule.com.
The Ouray Mule and Carriage Company sign; TIM bridling one of his mules; TIM giving a tour