Ludlow Massacre - Birthplace of Public Relations
On April 20, 1914, John Rockefeller ordered the Colorado militia (through his pal, the Colorado governor) to fire on a camp of striking mine workers and their families. What resulted in bodies of dead mothers and babies strewn about a field of burning tents, has since been dubbed "the Ludlow massacre." The United Mine Worker's Association commissioned a granite monument -- prominently featuring a mother and baby -- to mark the site, a stone's throw off I-25 exit 27.
John Rockefeller was smart. He hired a newspaperman to create the Rockefeller version of what had happened -- that the strikers were anarchists bent on shutting off America's supply of coal and threatening prosperous life as we know it. After all, no one wants to kill women and children -- so just imagine how bad they were to force Rockefeller to do so.
It worked, at least while Rockefeller was alive, which was all that mattered. That the Ludlow massacre is now known as the Ludlow massacre shows that Rockefeller's stab at spin doctoring didn't work for posterity -- but he was the first to try.
The massacre memorial must be a great make-out spot. It's spooky and unlit at night (and it IS a massacre site), and it comes with a handy parking lot. A creaky windmill groans nearby, certain to encourage cuddling. And if all else fails, the memorial has what we thought was an underground tornado shelter. "Let's hide down here, my dear."
It turns out the shelter is the actual Death Pit where two women and ten children suffocated after the tent above them caught fire. The United Mine Workers of America thoughtfully restored it as a concrete vault you can walk down into.