Wheeler Spring

Wheeler Spring


Jerome B. Wheeler became famous and wealthy in banking, mining, and railroad interests locally and in Aspen, Colorado. He founded Manitou Spring’s first bank in 1859 and first fire department in 1892. He provided several, large monetary gifts to build and improve the city’s streets. Manitou’s town clock was also a gift from the Wheeler family.

Wheeler Spring was drilled around 1920 by Jerome’s son-in-law, here at the corner of the grounds of his home, Windermere. The expansive house was located just behind this font where the Post Office now stands. A short distance to the west (left), some of the buildings on Wheeler’s estate originally contained a bowling alley and shooting range, and several still exist today as the Wheeler House, now owned by the Cliff House.

Manitou Spring’s most elegant hotel is located just across the street to the east (right) of Wheeler Spring — the Cliff House. Throughout its long and fascinating history, hotel guests have strolled down these sidewalks and sampled the spring waters on their way downtown, or to concerts and other events in Soda Springs Park, behind and just across the street to your left. Theodore Roosevelt, Henry Ford, and Harvey Firestone are among the many guests of note to have vacationed at the Cliff House.

Like many of Manitou’s springs, Wheeler Spring used to erupt at regular intervals when the carbonation in the water built up enough pressure to force it from the well. Restored in 1989 by the City of Manitou Springs and the Mineral Springs Foundation with a font designed by Randy Bowen, the water is now regulated to a steady flow to allow for easy filling of containers.

Mineral Content

Alkalinity1,930 mg/L
Calcium420 mg/L
Chloride241 mg/L
Copper0.17 mg/L
Fluoride3.40 mg/L
Iron.11 mg/L
Lithium.726 mg/L
Magnesium82.4 mg/L
Manganese1.33 mg/L
Potassium70.5 mg/L
Silica38.7 mg/L
Sodium483 mg/L
Sulfate207 mg/L
Zinc.096 mg/L
Total Dissolved Solids2,470 mg/L

The Font Artist

Randy Bowen

Black Forest artist, Randy Bowen, established his studio in Colorado Springs in 1980. His work includes abstract sculpture, architectural pieces, and functional stoneware pottery. Mr. Bowen has been featured in regional art exhibits and galleries, and his work is available year-round at Bowen Pottery, Black Forest, Colorado.

Bowen Pottery

Font History

Jerome Wheeler’s bowling alley located just west of his home along Park Avenue.
Photograph courtesy: Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum

A greenhouse was prominently featured towards the west end of Wheeler’s estate.
Photograph courtesy: Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum

Jerome Wheeler’s home, Windermere on the corner of Cañon and Park Avenue during flood event caused by Williams Canyon.

Photograph courtesy: Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum

Wheeler Bank building, 717 Manitou Ave.

Photograph courtesy: Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum