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Prunes the Burro

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Courtesy: Park County Local History Digital Archive
Prunes monument in Fairplay, CO.
Prunes the burro

The humble donkey is central to Colorado’s early mining history. The tough, sure-footed little animals carried millions of dollars in gold and silver out of mines on steep, narrow trails. Miners wrote stories and songs about trusted burros like Prunes, whose monument still stands on Fairplay’s Front Street.

He arrived in the 1860s and became one of the most reliable and recognizable burros in South Park. After decades of hard work, Prunes retired, free to roam about town. Residents gave him affection and his favorite food, flapjacks.

In 1930, a blizzard trapped the aging donkey in a shed for days. Prunes was rescued but never fully recovered. In front of weeping miners, Prunes was put down. He was sixty three. A year later, his heartbroken owner followed, after a deathbed request to have his ashes buried next to Prunes, the beloved burro of Fairplay.

About Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards are snapshots of our colorful state in sound. They give brief insights into our people and places, our flora and fauna, and our past and present, from every corner of Colorado.