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Brothels, Bordellos, and Bad GirlsBrothels, Bordellos, and Bad Girls

Prostitution in Colorado, 1860-1930

Jan Mackell

Narrated by Laura Jennings

Approximately 10 hours

Unabridged


Downloadable edition:

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Book published by University of New Mexico Press


Prostitution thrived in pioneer Colorado. Mining was the principal occupation and men outnumbered women more than twenty to one. Jan MacKell provides a detailed overview of the business between 1860 and 1930, focusing her research on the mining towns of Cripple Creek, Salida, Colorado City, and similar boomtown communities. She used census data, Sanborn maps, city directories, property records, marriage records, and court records to document and trace the movements of the women over the course of their careers, uncovering work histories, medical problems, and numerous relocations from town to town. She traces many to their graves, through years filled with abuse, disease, narcotics, and violence.

Jan Mackell is director of the Cripple Creek District Museum in nearby Cripple Creek. MacKell is also the author of Cripple Creek District: Last of Colorado's Gold Booms.

REVIEWS:

“This is serious social history at its best; MacKell combines skilled use of carefully collected data with an engrossing analysis of the many forces in play when women choose a way of life that seldom ends in true reward or real independence.”

ForeWord

“A real contribution to Colorado history.”

Denver Post

“Now this is a book you can read in one sitting. Not that it is less than scholarly; it is comprehensive, extensively researched, well organized, well written, but most of all it is readable. In fact, it is compelling.... Brothels, Bordellos, & Bad Girls is a fascinating book because it puts a human face on prostitution. ”

Roundup Magazine

“Neither romanticizing nor ridiculing these women, MacKell recounts both their tragedies and occasional happy endings. While detailing the realities of the business, she also creates vivid portraits of some participants.”

Reference & Research Book News

“The depth of MacKell's research brings the stories of scores of individual women to life.... Recommended.”

CHOICE

Brothels, Bordellos, & Bad Girls is an extensively researched local history, balancing both primary and secondary sources with intriguing references to interviews with (and respect for the privacy of) living descendents.... MacKell gives a well-deserved human face to these hard-working western pioneers who, in their time, were ignored as human beings and seen only as whores.”

The Historian

“The topic is interesting, the author knowledgeable, the presentation nonjudgmental...All sorts of interesting facts pop up in this work. ”

USA Today

“Delicacy, humor, respect and compassion are among the merits of MacKell's treatment of this touchy subject. Her 15 years of research unearthed revealing details.”

Rocky Mountain News





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