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History of the Dean Public House aka The Stagecoach Country Inn


In 1873, Captain Thomas J. Dean built the original two room, one story log cabin and open the towns first saloon. He had enlisted in the Civil war as a lieutenant with the Michigan Calvary, was captured and spent two years in the southern prisons of Libby and Andersonville. When released he returned to his unit with a promotion to captain.

When Captain Dean mustered out of service at the end of the Civil war he headed west with his wife Nancy, son Freddie and daughter Nettie. Originally, they settled in Idaho Springs just west of Denver and Dean became the superintendent of the schools. But then tragedy struct when 16 year old Nettie while on a date died in a runaway horse carriage accident. Must have struck the family hard because they soon moved further west crossing the newly surveyed Berthoud Pass into Grand County and settled in Hot Sulphur Springs.

This was a very typical saloon of the old west. Thomas serving whiskey, Nancy making dinners with their son running food. At night, the patrons that wanted to stay the night rolled out their bed rolls around the pot belly stove.

In 1877, the attorney general of Colorado appointed Captain Dean, who back in Michigan before the war had become a licensed attorney, to become the first judge in Grand County. For the first year he held court here in the saloon until the county build a courthouse. 

On July 4th 1883 Thomas Dean as a temporary secretary to the county  was killed in a shootout in Grand Lake called the Grand Lake Massacre.

In 1883 Walker McQueary and his mother Elizabeth purchased the Dean House and remodeled. Adding the public house side of the restaurant and the upstairs where there was originally 13 bedrooms for rent. They called it the McQueary House. They were instrumental in getting regular stagecoach service to Hot Sulphur Springs bringing people and the mail up from Denver. The stage route would go from Denver to Georgetown and then up over Berthoud pass and make a few stops before arriving here and then continue west to Troublesome. In 1890, Walker became one of the early sheriffs of Grand County and Elizabeth took over the McQueary House operations.

In 1913, Alice Davis purchased the Inn. She was a business woman who was enamored with the automobile.

Alice began to build some of the first motels in the county. Typically, they consisted of a small room in which you could stay that was connected to a carport and then another room and carport built out in long row.

We have about two acres here and in its heyday Alice had built over 40 motel rooms with carports, a bath house with showers, tent accommodations on the western part of the property and she ran the Inn. It was called Davis Cottages and she served fried chicken every Saturday night. Alice Davis lived a long life and pass away in 1953.

In 1962 a couple from the Denver area purchased the inn and did a lot of renovation. They brought the electrical and hot water heating up to date, remodeled two of the upstairs rooms into bathrooms and added the south wing. Downstairs the south wing is our kitchen and baking area and upstairs they added 5 new guest rooms. These are our luxury rooms since they come with their own private 1960s bathroom. They tore down all but one of the motels and the bath house in the back yard and renamed the inn The Stagecoach Stop.

Since then, the inn has change hands many times. In the 70s it was a Mexican restaurant with a dance floor. Many of the long term residents in town tell us about their favorite times here at the inn.

In 1998 two couples purchased it and started a bed and breakfast inn with themed rooms. We had an Elvis room, a cowboy room, even a harlots room all in red.

They lost it to the bank in the 2008 recession. We purchased the inn in 2016 and open our first restaurant "The Dean Public House" in 2017 and then in 2019 opened our second restaurant "The Dean West" in Kremmling. The Dean West is the first Brewstillery in Colorado. The Brewstillery includes "The Dean West" restaurant, "Grand Adventure Brewery" and "Idlewild Distillery" all under one roof.

Come and join us for dinner and talk about the old west here in the mountains of Colorado.


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