The old Mosca Mercantile
Mosca is another old farming town on the east side of the San Luis Valley that is now almost a ghost town due to the change in water rights brought about by the US losing a water lawsuit with Mexico. There are still quite a few people living here but it isn't like the old days. Mosca is also the closest town to the Great Sand Dunes National Park. The Colorado Gator Farm is north of here, so is the famous "UFO landing site"... The next town south is Alamosa, and that's where all the business in this part of the San Luis Valley went to.
Mosca was named for nearby Mosca Pass (east side of the Great Sand Dunes), which was, in turn, named for Luis de Moscoso de Alvarado (an early Spanish explorer of the area).
The first school building in Mosca was completed in 1890. In 1891, the Methodist Episcopal Church was organized but the church building itself wasn't finished until the late fall of 1894 (for a total cost of $178.50). The vestibule and bell tower were added in 1943 (the bell was given to the Mosca Baptist Church by the Stanley Community Church in 1907, then transferred to the Mosca Methodists in 1943). Since 1943, what is now the United Methodist Church has shared their minister with churches in Alamosa, Sargent and Center.
I put this data in here to show how populations have moved around in the San Luis Valley depending on business, weather and governmental whims. The immaculate condition of this 100+ year-old church building tells you there are some pretty hardy souls living in Mosca who love this church. Next door is the community center. It was built by donations of money and labor from the faithful of Mosca and some of the surrounding communities. I met a couple of these folks while I was in town and what great people... the kind of people America was originally built by: the sweat of their brows, the salt of the Earth.
Another old mercantile in Mosca
Some of the old buildings are still in use
The United Methodist Church and community center
Interior of the United Methodist Church
This building was next to the newer Mosca Public Schools campus
...and yes, there are some newer homes in Mosca, too
Fast Facts about Mosca, Colorado
Alamosa County PagesAlamosa - Hooper - Mosca - Alamosa County
Great Sand Dunes National Park - Alamosa NWR - Baca NWR
Los Caminos Antiguos Scenic Byway - Sangre de Cristo National Heritage Area