COLORADO: The Cross That Was

On Sunday, Aug. 24, 1873, pioneer Western Photographer William H. Jackson and his helpers clambered up the iced boulders of Colorado's wild Sawatch mountains with a bulky camera, primitive film, darkroom tent and developing chemicals to make the first photograph of a natural wonder: the Mountain of the Holy Cross. Jackson made thousands of other pictures, but Holy Cross was considered his masterpiece. Despite technical progress, the thousands of Holy Cross photographs made since never surpassed Jackson's famous picture. And none, it turned out last week, ever will.

Legend has it that two 18th century Spanish monks first found and...

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