Celebrating Old Places: Montcalme Sanitarium, Manitou Springs, Colorado

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Montcalme Sanitarium, Miramont Castle, ca. 1900s (Wikicommons).

Montcalme Sanitarium, aka. Miramont Castle, Manitou Springs, Colorado

Miramont Castle was built between 1895 and 1897 by Father Francolon, based upon architectural design elements that he picked up in his travels and ideas from his father, a diplomat. He hired brothers Archie and Angus Gillis to design the building, and was involved in the detailed planning meetings. The green sandstone used in the construction of the castle’s walls was quarried nearby. The “modern” building had electricity and indoor plumbing. Father Francolon invited the Sisters of Mercy to use his home for a tuberculosis (TB) treatment facility. Their first patient arrived in August 1895 and the next year they established the sanitarium. They offered good food, clean lodging, and care to patients who were not too seriously ill; and by 1896 they also taught music lessons. From 1900 to 1904, Miramont was vacant. The sanitarium part of the building burned down in 1907 due to an electrical fire, and patients moved into the Miramont Castle building. It used about a dozen open-air TB huts until about 1923. Between 1928 and 1946, the building was used by the Sisters as a luxury boarding house, a retreat for clergy, and then stood vacant. Toda the structure is maintained as a museum that is owned by the Manitou Springs Historical Society.

A ghost story was written recently using the castle’s history as subject (see cover below). You can read more, here:

https://runningawaytobooktopia.wordpress.com/2015/03/17/book-review-miramonts-ghost-by-elizabeth-hall/

Below is a photograph of he building as it looks today. The museum can be toured. Read more, here:

http://miramontcastle.org/

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tuberculosis_treatment_in_Colorado_Springs#Montcalm_Sanitarium_(Manitou)

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Miramont Castle today (Wikicommons).

One response to “Celebrating Old Places: Montcalme Sanitarium, Manitou Springs, Colorado

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