At 15 years old in 1959, Jim Bishop paid four hundred and fifty dollars for a two and a half acre parcel of land enclosed on three sides by the majestic San Isabel National Forest in southern Colorado. He camped there in the summers with his dad until 1967, when Jim married his sweetheart Phoebe. In 1969 Jim decided it was time to start building a cabin in the mountains they so loved. Since rocks were plentiful, he decided to build a one-room cottage. Jim built an Eiffel-Tower-shaped fireplace in the cabin, and people started saying it looked like a castle. That was just the beginning…
Over the years as the castle grew, more and more people heard about this phenomenon up in the mountains and began showing up in increasing numbers. Friends told Jim that he should be making some money off what was becoming an attraction! Seeing as the original idea for a castle came from people visiting the property, Jim figured that if people were welcomed onto the property FOR FREE then he could put out a donation box and people could donate whatever they wanted. This increased Jim’s feeling that the castle was a place of American Freedom.
Keep in mind that Jim worked on this for many, many years…by himself!
If you happen to be in this neck of the woods, I highly recommend checking this place out!