Colorado Springs Then and Now

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JBCM Magazine Creative Spotlight

Local, Colorado Springs photographer Mike Pach, has created a book which commemorates the past 150 years of Colorado Springs history and, at the same time, highlights and recognizes the progress the Colorado community has made since.
To best capture the meaning and significance of this book please enjoy the following snippet of the book’s introduction in Mike’s own words …

The idea for this project came to me during a conversation with Matt Mayberry in May 2016. We were at a Downtown Partnership mixer, and he mentioned that he would like to do a “then and now” series with photos from the Pioneers Museum archives. I had recently finished my 365-day “Same Tree, Different Day” project, and I think that on some level I was looking for a creative way to fill the void I was left with after completing that series.

Photographer and author, Mike Pack with his new book “Colorado Springs, Then and Now”

I’m sure Matt didn’t know at the time that he lit a spark in me, and the prospect of creating something as a gift to the people of Colorado Springs never left my head. I reminded Matt of our conversation whenever I saw him. The two of us ended up in the same discussion group at a meeting our city planners hosted in September 2017. It was then that I learned about our sesquicentennial and Mayor John Suthers’ wishes to celebrate this milestone in a big way. I now had the perfect reason to get started, and I shared my ideas to Matt before leaving the meeting.

My work began in the summer of 2019, when I was asked to have a pair of photos on display for the mayor’s press conference on July 31. It was held at the site where the city’s first survey stake was placed in 1871, and the plans for observing our sesquicentennial were officially announced.

After that, I began to formulate my plan of attack by making connections with people who could help me learn about Colorado Springs history and who could be a source of historic photos. I explained to everyone I met with that I am a photographer, not a historian, and I was looking for all the help and guidance I could get. I was told I would be a historian by the time I finished. Although I learned a lot, I think I’ll stick with calling myself a photographer for now.

When I volunteered to take on this task, my first thoughts were, “No problem. How much history could there be in only 150 years?” Boy, was I wrong to think it would be easy for me to sift through the past 150 years, but I think that my lack of knowledge about our past allowed me to enter into my research with an open mind.

I have written a personal journal entry for each of my photos to give insight into my thoughts, my creative process and my sense of humor. I found this type of information to be missing from most of the photos I found in the archives, and I often wanted to know what the photographers’ experiences were when capturing their images.

Although I created all of the “now” photos myself, I couldn’t have done this work without the help of the many people who contributed in some way. It really did take a village to pull this off, and I have listed everyone I wish to thank on a separate page. There are some who helped so much, that words cannot express how grateful I am for making this happen.

The thing I am most proud of is that I have made a lot of connections with amazing people who truly care about this city.
~Excerpt from the book introduction by Mike Pach.

Mike’s collection of then-and-now photographs, featuring contemporary images inspired by historic pictures, gives you an intimate glimpse of how the Colorado Springs community has developed over the past 150 years.

Your Colorado Home is a song about a man (Mike Pach) who grew to love his home through the art of photography. He told his story with such passion and emotional connection that Marcelle’s Colorado dream grew in her heart. This song is about the man and the dream.

Check out and buy Mike’s book HERE

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