What you do with the auctioned outhouse is your business | SteamboatToday.com

What you do with the auctioned outhouse is your business

— Anyone who has longed to own a genuine historical building from Routt County's past, but couldn't justify the expense, has a rare opportunity July 25 in the town of Yampa when a homestead outhouse will be on the auction block at a benefit for Friends of Crossan's M&A Market.

Crossan's, which dates to Yampa's earliest days in 1903, has been under restoration for several years and was the recipient in March of a $400,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs. The funds will go most of the way toward completing the construction project, which will create a historic site for visitors in the main level and new town offices on the upper floor.

If you go:

What: Call of the Wild Auction benefitting restoration of Crossan's M&A Market in Yampa; complimentary beer and wine, live entertainment

When: 4 p.m., July 25

Where: The Antlers Cafe and Bar, Yampa

In addition to the vintage outhouse, there is a claw-foot bath tub on the auction block, courtesy of Donna and Tim Corrigan, and a vintage rocking chair from Sue and Rob MacCarthy.

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Friends of Crossan's spokeswoman Noreen Moore said another enticing auction item that goes up for bid next week is a two-night stay for four in a private cabin at Eagle Rock Ranch on Aug. 28 and 29, including access to fly fishing for trophy trout, courtesy of Christie and Scott Somes.

"People have been breathtakingly generous," Moore said. "We have great auction items; now we just have to get people to attend."

Other items include a $500 certificate for a stand-up paddle board from Hala, an oil painting of Crossans by Chula Beauregard and a hot air balloon ride from Ian and Shelley Cox.

Moore said it's apparent that business people in Steamboat Springs have formed an attachment to Crossan's, which is tentatively to have a grand opening on July 4, 2016. She said a number of Steamboat's best restaurants have contributed $50 gift certificates to the silent auction.

The town of Yampa purchased Crossan’s from Ken and Cindy Montgomery in 2006 for $69,000. It was added to the Routt County Register of Historic Places in 2008 and subsequently added to the National Register.

The market was built in 1903 by two brothers with a checkered past.

"In 1902, there wasn't much to Yampa," Yampa historian Rita Herold told a Steamboat audience in 2012. "The church didn't have its steeple on yet. But in 1903, 40 new buildings went up in one year."

Sam and Ed Bell, who had a reputation for strong-arming union leaders on behalf of mine owners in Cripple Creek, built the general merchandise store in the town's L-shaped commercial district.

The Bell brothers sold the store in 1905 to Buck & Son, and just as fast as they built the first general merchandise store in Yampa, they attempted to take advantage of the new owners by building a new, larger store right next door, Herold said.

Buck & Son morphed into Buck and Moore after a year. But it was George Canant, who purchased the store in 1910, who finally brought some stability to the operation. He dubbed the store Canant's on the Corner and competed with the Bell brothers by touting his selection of fresh produce. He remained at the helm of the store until 1930.

Because it wasn't entirely proper for young ladies and respectable gentlemen to hang out in the local saloon, Herold said, the general merchandise store became an important social hub.

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205, email tross@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ThomasSRoss1

If you go:

What: Call of the Wild Auction benefitting restoration of Crossan’s M&A Market in Yampa; complimentary beer and wine, live entertainment

When: 4 p.m., July 25

Where: The Antlers Cafe and Bar, Yampa