Tolland Falls is located on Highway 67 at the historic Jarre Creek Ranch in Sedalia, Colorado. Jarre Canyon gets its name from the pioneer family Jarre who acquired the land below the mouth of the canyon, along the creek that bears their name. The property was deeded to the Jarres in 1873 by the United States government as payment for service in the Civil War. The Jarres also had the earliest recorded water rights to Jarre Creek.
The area around Jarre Creek was named Douglas County after Stephen A. Douglas, of Lincoln-Douglas fame. Jarre Canyon, along the current Highway 67 was well known as the “mountain man” trail. Trappers and traders such as Jim Bridger and Kit Carson are known to have traveled the canyon. The principal activities in Jarre Canyon were cattle and timber. In 1871 the Rio Grande Railroad laid tracks to Sedalia and established a station depot there. Most of the surrounding area was owned by the National Land and Improvement Company, a holding company for the railroad. In 1876 the Santa Fe Railroad laid tracks through Sedalia.
In 1875 Alphonse Jarre married Christina Carlson and had two children, a son, named Maurice who died at the age of 10, and a daughter Annie. The children were born at the Jarre Creek Ranch in the homestead house that; although, updated and remodeled, remains in use today. Alphonse died in 1888 leaving Annie and her mother Christina as the principal inheritors of the estate.
Christina remarried in 1890. Her new husband, John Overstreet, is credited with building the red and white dairy barn that stills stands on the property and is now used for storage of hay and jumps (see picture at left). Christina, and her second daughter Emma Overstreet, led their lives under a blanket of scandal. Their story as well as the challenges faced by John Overstreet when he left Missouri at the age of 14 and his journey west to pursue his dream of becoming a cowboy is chronicled in the 2008 National Western Heritage Wrangler Museum Award winning country western/folk album by Juni Fisher (the great granddaughter of John Overstreet) entitled “Gone for Colorado”. The album tells the story of not only John but of the hardships suffered by Christina as well as her daughter Emma who lost her mother at the age of 3 and died herself at the age of 12.
Following Christina’s death in 1895, John Overstreet married Ada Dow. He and his new family eventually moved to New Mexico. Title to the ranch was ultimately passed back to Annie Jarre Cramer (Christina and Alphonse’s first daughter) and, after a squabble in 1903 with John Overstreet regarding water rights, she continued to live at the ranch with her husband Louis Cramer. Annie and Louis had two children, Raymond Alphonse born in 1896 and Peal Constance born in 1897.
Over the years the ranch has been primarily used for cattle, tree farming and hay production. The ranch still produces some of the finest quality grass hay in the area. At one time there was an apple orchard and a few of the fruit trees remain along the creek and in one of the southwest pastures. A tree farm still exists on the property and consists of Blue Spruce, Austrian Pine, Pinion Pine and some Ponderosa Pines.
During the 1990’s, the ranch was home to the Jarre Creek Ranch Brewery. The brewery itself was located in a small building adjacent to the historic dairy barn built by John Overstreet. Tolland Falls’ Indoor Arena is located in the building once used to house the refrigeration units for the beer kegs once the beer was made.
Susan Tinder, owner of Tolland Falls, purchased the ranch in October of 2003. Under construction for almost a year, the Equestrian Center opened at the end of October 2004. The ranch continues to produce hay and offers trees for sale in addition to the training and production of show horses.