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Red Mountain

David Lavender's classic novel of the rich silver strikes between Ouray (Argent) and Silverton (Baker), Colorado is back in print. Based on actual historical events and places (but with a few liberties taken) his fast-moving book details how hero Johnny Ogden builds what is now the Million Dollar Highway to connect Argent with the booming Red Mountain Mining District. Johnny's intense enthusiasm, dedication and ambition help make up for his youthful mistakes. Bad feelings flair when Johnny allows the Ute Indians to seize a freighter who had murdered an Indian. The people of Argent feel that turning a white man over to the Utes is an act of unbelievable treachery. Johnny's believes that by doing so he prevented an Indian massacre. Johnny still manages to push his road forward, to participate in Red Mountain's boom and to help bring the railroad to the new mining towns. Red Mountain is a colorful, exciting novel that vividly portrays the excitement and optimism of the silver boom days of Colorado, as well as the doom and despair that followed after the collapse of the price of silver. David Lavender is the author of nearly forty books on the West, including two that won Pulitzer Prize nominations. He writes about southwest Colorado from first-hand knowledge. He was born in Telluride, Colorado, and witnessed the final days of Colorado's great mines. As a young adult he worked at the famous Camp Bird Mine and on his father's cattle ranch in southwestern Colorado. He graduated from Princeton but returned to Colorado until his family's ranch failed during the Great Depression. Afterwards he moved to California.