Colorado's Healthcare Heritage

Updates to Volume One — 1868

1868: In June, Michael Beshoar, MD, 35 — who had established the first drug store in Pueblo in 1866 and who began practicing medicine in Trinidad in 1867 — founded the Pueblo Chieftain, which continues to be one of Colorado's prominent newspapers more than 140 years later.

Dr. Michael Beshoar continued to practice medicine in Trinidad, about 85 miles south of Pueblo, until his death in September 1907.

In the fall of 1868 — while he was serving as the quartermaster at Fort Reynolds, about 18 miles east of Pueblo — Lieutenant John Lambert bought the Pueblo Chieftain from Dr. Beshoar, who had moved to Trinidad in 1867. His brother ran the paper until 1871, when John Lambert left the Army and took over the paper himself.

John Lambert was born in Wexford, Ireland, in January 1837, and moved to Dubuque, Iowa, with his parents when he was ten. He joined the Ninth Iowa Cavalry in 1861, and in 1866 he was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Fifth U.S. Infantry. From 1866 to 1872, he served as quartermaster at Fort Reynolds.

In 1903, the Sisters of St. Francis from Wheaton, Illinois, opened Sacred Heart Orphanage in Pueblo on a ten-acre site that John J. Lambert had bought and donated to the Sisters, who cared for children there until 1981. John Lambert died in Pueblo in 1916.

In 1868, the Chieftain published this:

A feature of Colorado society which struck us forcibly and favorably on our first advent into the Territory was the large degree of religious toleration, and consequent freedom from religious bigotry that we found here. Catholic, Jew, and Protestant are recognized and treated by each other as members of the same brotherhood. Large-hearted, liberal-minded, educated men can never brook the spirit of intolerance. (quoted by Andrew E. Murray, The Skyline Synod, pg. 25)

Murray then noted that "The optimism of this writer was not realized in later years, for in the 1920s Colorado was torn by religious and racial strife because of the activities of the Ku Klux Klan."

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