The mission of OCRHM shall be to procure, preserve and exhibit items and artifacts related to educating the public about the ranch heritage of Ouray County, Colorado and our surrounding area.
Our Ranching HerItage
Ouray County was developed in 1877 with the Town of Ridgway in 1891. The mining boom brought settlers to this area as ranchers soon followed, working the land and helping support the mines with cattle & agricultural needs.
President Abraham Lincoln signed into law on May 20, 1862, the Homestead Act which encouraged Western migration by providing settlers 160 acres of public land. In exchange, homesteaders paid a small filing fee and were required to complete five years of continuous residence before receiving ownership of the land. After six months of residency, homesteaders also had the option of purchasing the land from the government for $1.25 per acre. The Homestead Act led to the distribution of 80 million acres of public land by 1900.
Our area still produces cattle and livestock for the nations beef industry.
The Ouray County Ranch History Museum was started at the request of local ranch families to preserve their family's legacy in this county. Stop by to see what ranch life was like starting from the 1870's and learn about the ranching that is still going on in our area today.
MAY 28 – OCTOBER 13
WED – SAT 11AM - 4PM
SUN 12PM - 4PM