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And the West is History: N.W. Hammond Blacksmith Shop – Ca. 1900

The N.W. Hammond Blacksmith & Wagon Shop operated in Durango for about 35 years. A Civil War veteran, Mr. Hammond came to Durango in 1887, opening the business shortly thereafter. Like many blacksmith shops, it struggled in the early 1900s to transition from horseshoeing and wagon repair to automobile repair. His son, Gilbert, took over the business but closed it in 1922. He moved to Pomona, California, in order to continue working as a blacksmith. The elder Hammond retired to Denver and died in 1925 at the age of 77. Mr. Hammond (seen in doorway on crutches) used his initials for business, probably because people had so much trouble with his first name: Nohum. Varied documentation of his life and death show misspellings of “Noham” and “Naham.” This shop was located at G Street (Ninth) and Railroad Avenue. Today, this location is in the west 100 block of Ninth Street. A picture taken here today would show TBK Bank. – Ed Horvat for Animas Museum, edhorvat@animasmuseum.org (Catalog Number: 16.09.2 from the La Plata County Historical Society Photo Collections)