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The Fireside Gallery contains changing exhibits with various items from our collection. These cases change approximately twice a year. Stop by and see something different every time you visit.

Highlights from the gallery include:

 New Acquisitions Case
"Quality Shoe Repair Collection"

Quality Shoe Exhibit

In the early 1900s, Frank Musso moved to America from Italy. Instead of staying on the east coast as so many other immigrants did, he headed out west to Colorado. Frank began his shoe repair business in Grand Junction and passed on the skill of the trade to his son Don who continued the family tradition of quality repair and boot building.

The Musso family moved their business to Loveland in 1967, bringing with them the family tradition of shoe-making. Quality Shoe Repair moved into a space at 224 East Fourth Street next door to the Rialto Theater. Don Musso retired from his shop in 1985, selling the business to his two sons, Frank and Jim. They continued to run Quality Shoe Repair until it closed in 2008.

“The shoe business started with my grandfather, Frank Musso, in Italy,” Jim said. “He worked in a shoe factory where he learned how to make shoes, cavalry boots and ladies shoes. He also learned how to repair shoes, because that was what was needed in his job.”

Jim Musso acquired many shoes, tools and equipment, and shoe advertisements that he regularly displayed at the Quality Shoe Repair shop. This collection was donated to the Loveland Museum/Gallery in 2010 by Jim Musso in memory of Don and Mary Musso, his parents, and the founders of Quality Shoe Repair. 

History of Loveland's Fire Department

Bartholf Hose Cart Team

Fire departments organized hose team competitions to take the heat out of the often fierce rivalries that developed between local squads. Frank Bartholf’s Hose Company No.1 fielded a championship team for the first state tournament in 1887. The local boys set a record of 30.5 seconds in the 600-foot wet test and did the 600-foot hub-to-hub in 23.6 seconds.

Bartholf’s first hose cart is quite unique. While the race team members were waiting for the city to buy a regulation cart, they took a set of wheels from a worn out wagon and made a hose cart of their own to practice with. During practice, several large rocks were tied to the axle to add weight so the cart would not bounce into the air and turn over. In 1884, the first regulation cart arrived in town for the team to use.

History of Loveland's Police Department

Office Peak

Night Marshal Frank Peak, the only Loveland Police officer killed while on duty, was slain at 2:30 a.m. on Tuesday, July 13, 1915. He was 35 years old at the time of his death.

Marshal Peak served 2 ½ months on the Loveland Police Department when he met his untimely death on patrol near the South Lincoln Avenue Bridge. Marshal Peak was struck three times by .38 caliber bullets. He was known to be fearless and his vigilance may have made enemies among lawbreakers. In fact, his murder may have been the result of a run-in with individuals he had encountered earlier in the night. His empty Colt automatic six shooter was found on the ground near his body. The policeman’s “billy”, on display in this case, was still strapped to his wrist.

Marshal Frank Peak moved to Loveland with his parents in 1895 from Boone County, Iowa. He married Miss Nellie Puntney on May 22, 1903. He was survived by three children – Edward, age 10; Lyle, age 8; and Edna, age 5.

The Loveland Daily Herald reported Frank Peak’s murder as one of the most repulsive crimes ever enacted in the history of the City of Loveland. Mayor Norcross offered a $500 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the criminals. Two suspects were questioned; however, no one was ever charged with his murder and it remains unsolved to this day.


Loveland Pottery

Rocky Mountain Pottery Factory

Loveland’s Rocky Mountain Pottery Factory, originally known as Loveland Art Pottery, was established in 1952. It was located approximately two miles west of town on Highway 34. The facility featured over 30,000 square feet devoted to hand-decorated pottery, wall décor, statuary, figurines, planters, dinnerware and cookware. The factory even developed pine-scented pottery. The distinctive pine cone motif was painted on a vast variety of items. Personalized mugs were a favorite tourist souvenir. Rocky Mountain Pottery Factory products can still be found at local antique stores, flea markets and garage sales. The factory closed during the early 1980s.



History of Loveland's Student Athletics

History of Loveland's Youth Athletics

Recreational activities for all ages were plentiful in Loveland during the 1880s and 90s. Among the most popular were baseball, swimming, boxing, hunting, fishing, foot races, ice skating, horse racing, fire hose team racing and sleigh riding.

With the building of Loveland’s first schools, students began playing organized sports. Loveland’s East Side School was constructed in 1881. Loveland’s first graduating high school class, consisting of five students, graduated from East Side School in 1894. The school burned down and was replaced by Washington School in 1905. The first football game was played on vacant lots north of Washington School. In 1917, Loveland High School opened on West Fourth Street. In 1926, an athletic field behind the high school opened for use. It was the first green football field in Colorado. The Loveland High School Indians captured the spirit of the entire community. Year after year, both boys and girls became members of a wide range of sports teams. Notable coaches such as Bill Reed and Ray Patterson, in the years between 1917 and 1964, when Loveland High School was located on West Fourth Street, had a profound effect on students’ ethics, sportsmanship, physical fitness and scholastics and played significant roles in community affairs.
Last updated: 5/23/2011 3:28:19 PM