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Primero- Colorado Fuel and Iron's Model Town

Blake Hatton, Abbie Specht, Authors

This path was created by scarlett.  The last update was by Christopher J. Schreck.

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The school buildings of Primero, 1915. 

Primero Schools

According to Industrial Bulletin the schools of Primero were a part of a welfare development for community needs in the numerous CF&I built mining camps of Colorado. The schools were not built or operated by the CF&I company, but the company’s influence over the education board during that time was paramount considering the company’s tax bracket. The board allowing for small districts to flourish throughout mining communities such as Primero, helped support the cause for a decent education to the miners' children. Primero was established as part of District 61.

All of the mining towns had grammar schools for kindergarten to eighth grade. There were a lot of children in the mining communities who went to school regularly in grades kindergarten to fifth grade, however, by grades six through eighth the population of students who regularly attended decreased. There is a theory that some of the children of the six through eighth grade were put to work illegally. Another theory suggested many of the children in the mining towns had parents who a little to education, therefore, school was not understood as a primary importance by some. Primero schools offered teachings to children from other communities such as Segundo, and Valdez.

Many of the children were immigrants from Mexico and Italy, and some were from America. The language barrier was dealt with by teachers using photos and pictures to teach students. 


A school train was established. The train traveled a total of several miles daily. The train took the children and high school students from other mining towns of Segundo and Valdez to the Primero schools in the morning. By 8:00 a.m. train dropped off the students. School was finished by 3:30 p.m. and students were taken back by train to the other camps. The train was established by 1916. 

1920 Schools' Conditions

1920, The Industrial Bulletin discusses the conditions of the grade school and high school of Primero and their good condition. The schools had been painted, calcimined, and renovated. $1700.00 was spent on the renovations.
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