Family Visit: Schrocks and Smiths

Yesterday I had a nice get-acquainted visit from three descendants of two pioneer Morrison families. Since the Heritage Museum closed, people don’t find us as easily, but we always appreciate hearing from people who grew up in Morrison or folks who are researching family histories or have something to share. Now that we’re primarily online, please post your comments on any page here, or send an email to info AT

We first heard from Jonas Henry Schrock (III) a few months ago, and that historic name got my attention! Yesterday, Jonas and I met for the first time, and he brought along cousins Karl and Mark Smith. The Schrocks and the (Henry*) Smiths are two of Morrison’s handful of early families whose stories are woven into the town’s history and who have many descendants in the area. Mark and Karl’s father, Bill Smith, had visited several years ago to share stories.

Jonas I came to Morrison in 1874 and homesteaded on Mt. Fischer. In 1888, he married Elnora Cleveland, and they began raising a family, ultimately seven children in all. Jonas II, born in 1899, was known as “Joe,” and, of course, was the father of Jonas III. Mary Schrock later married Henry Smith, of the Baker & Smith Garage, a long-time Morrison enterprise on main street where today the Morrison Carworks continues to provide similar services. They are the grandparents of Karl and Mark Smith.

The original Schrocks bought a home in town in 1906 and, as the gentlemen reminded me, sold the mountain property to John Brisben Walker, who later renamed the mountain “Mt. Falcon” and built a tourism empire in nearby Red Rocks.

Jonas Schrock ran, at various times, a meat market, liquor store, and saloon in Morrison. The latter is best remembered, and was the scene of an infamous double murder, the result of a quarrel between patrons in 1889. Jonas was considerably older than Elnora, and when he fell ill and later died, she was forced to sell some of the property to support her family. At this, she was obviously very successful, as her family grew and prospered as part of Morrison’s story. Like so many Morrison pioneer women, Elnora was hardy and capable and did what needed to be done!

More on the Schrock saga, along with the Smith story, will appear here later.

* Morrison’s other Smith heritage is in the Jeremiah-Robert Smith line.

7 responses to “Family Visit: Schrocks and Smiths

  1. Is there any more info available as to the “double murder” in Morrison in 1889? Thank you.

  2. Jeannine Parker

    My Great Grandfather James Wilson Haworth owned a drug store in Morrison during the 1870s(1875-1880. I know he moved to Pueblo In 1880. Is there any data on the early druggists/? His wife name was Alverda and there was two sons born in Morrison. Thank you

  3. We have a story in our archives about Leona Smith, a telephone operator who warned the people of Morrison and the surrounding area of an impending flood on August 9, 1934. She was awarded a Vail Medal from Mountain States Telephone for her outstanding public service. We are trying to located her or her family to obtain more information. Can you help?
    Jody Georgeson, Archivist
    The Telecommunications History Group

  4. Gaye Buzbee Jacobs

    Whatever happened to the idea of a small, local museum in Morrison?
    I am a descendant (cousin) of Amy Lewis Abbo, who lived in the original home which became the Horton House. She died in the barn on that property. Her brother, Oscar, was accidentally killed by one of John Brisben-Walker’s horses. If anyone has information to share, I would most appreciate being contacted. Our family names are Lewis, Sawyer, and Buzbee.
    Gaye Buzbee Jacobs

  5. Hello! I am Mark Smith’s daughter, Shilo Smith. I stumbled upon this article randomly, and enjoyed reading it. Thank you.

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