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Bella Union Building Site - Pueblo CO
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Benchmark Blasterz
N 38° 15.784 W 104° 36.900
13S E 533680 N 4235073
Quick Description: The Bella Union Building was located at 308 S Union St in the Pueblo Union Ave. Historic District near the Union Depot. It was burned by arson in the 1980s.
Location: Colorado, United States
Date Posted: 10/15/2014 8:14:31 AM
Waymark Code: WMMNMR
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Outspoken1
Views: 0

Long Description:
The Bella Union Building was a lovely structure that had bend fully renovated into a restaurant when it was burned down by arsonists. Today this historic marker is attached to the building next door to where the old Bella Union building once stood.

308 S Union Avenue
Built in 1888
Architectural style: Italianate

In 1888 Frank Shrock had the first three-story commercial office complex built on Union Avenue. The J. S. Glass Clothing Co. occupies the first floor and upper story tenants included Frank Shrock, another attorney, two physicians, and a real estate agent.
Union Avenue was notorious for its saloons with auxiliary services” located nearby. Under the guise of female boarding houses, brothels flourished from the 1860s through the 1890s. In 1895, Pueblo designated a “Red Light District,” and most of the women moved within its boundaries along First Street and Union Avenue until the “District’s” forced closure in 1911.

The police had weekly “arrest and fine” session for prostitutes. The women were fined %6 and the madams $25 a month. Police magistrate Frank M. Gray, an understanding man, allowed the women to pay their fine in installments if they lacked immediate funds. Arrests were usually made on Wednesday, a slow business day. Colorful names hid the women’s true identity and helped return customers remember names. Some popular names were Sweet Fanny, Diamond Tooth, lacy Liz and Two Ton Tilly.

After the flood of June 1921, the neighborhood deteriorated, and by the 1940s saloons and prostitution had become a local tradition. Teenagers delighted to driving down the alleys between Union and Victoria Streets to see the “red lights” over the second-story doorways. Male trolley passengers were solicited for business from second-story windows.

In the early 1980s, John Harrison and eight other partners planned to open a restaurant, “The Bella Union.” The week of the grand opening, fire destroyed the building. The arsonists were convicted and received a jail sentence.”
Group or Groups Responsible for Placement:
Historic Pueblo Business Association

County or City: Pueblo CO

Check here for Web link(s) for additional information: [Web Link]

Date Dedicated: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
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Benchmark Blasterz visited Bella Union Building Site - Pueblo CO 10/20/2014 Benchmark Blasterz visited it