I really enjoyed your recent coverage of the renovation of the First National Bank Building aka Nugget Building. I put together the deal with the Formby's to purchase the building twenty some years ago. My wife, Karen and I were partners in the deal.
Celebrating great people like the Formbys is the right thing to do as this beautifully renovated building will forever stand majestically on our Main Street. The Formbys are very special people and Karen and I sold our interest to them when we left town after living in Telluride for 40 years starting in 1971, knowing that they would keep it going.
One thing I would like to point out is that the building was designated a National Historic Treasure and is the only building in our great country that is so designated. Other National Treasures are the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Monument and the Statue of Liberty as examples that share this very special honor. Richard Moe who was the director of the National Trust for Historic Preservation was responsible for helping us get the designation and for many years had a home in the Telluride area.
It is a very special building, however, the National Treasure designation is also due to the fact that Telluride's own L.L. Nunn who joined with Nikola Tesla to build the world's first alternating current power plant in Telluride in 1891 is the true crowning achievement for this incredible honor. At the public designation ceremony in Washington DC, it was pointed out that without AC power our country might have lost World War I. The story goes that the Germans were taunting and saying, "So what, the Americans are coming, we will kick their ass just like we have everyone else's, Bring 'em on". Well they were soon saying, "Where are they getting all these tanks, trucks, guns, ships, and planes?" All countries have brave men that will fight for their country, but you win wars with hardware, guns, planes, tanks and the such.
Hats off to Bill and Katrine Formby who spent 20 years and many millions of dollars to restore and preserve this very special building on our Main Street, which will stand for future generations as our community's anchor and an example that we have a very special home and a very special history and have very special people that live, love and accomplish great things here. What a wonderful gift. Thank you Bill and Katrine, and also thanks to the many people that worked on the project and all of those people that understand that Telluride is a special place where L.L. Nunn and Nikola Tesla and the Pinheads changed the world and saved democracy. We inherited a great history and a special place and Telluride has always risen to the challenge. We have many challenges that need our attention, mainly affordable housing, transportation and the car and an economy that works for everyone.