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Ward, Colorado was founded by and named for Calvin Ward, a prospector on the the site known as Miser's Dream. Byrus W. Deardorff discovered the Columbia vein the following year (in 1861), and Ward enjoyed a boom; the town's population would grow to several thousand before declining. One local silver mine would produce over 2 million ounces of silver, and many other mines would remain profitable for decades.
Ward was incorporated in June 1896, and the railroad arrived two years later over the Whiplash and Switzerland Trail, climbing more than 4,000 feet over the 26 miles from Boulder. More than 50 of Ward's buildings were destroyed in a 1901 fire, but the town was immediately rebuilt.
Ward was largely deserted by the 1920s, but the construction of the Peak-to-Peak Highway in the 1930s led to a modest revival. Today Ward
has the curious twin distinctions of, on one hand, being a reputed haven for outcasts, social misfits, and drug users, and, on the other
hand, having the highest concentration of PhD holders in the United States.
Sources: authorstephenwhite.com, wikipedia.org