In July, 2013 the Mancos Valley Chamber of Commerce and School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania (UPenn) began discussions to explore the preservation and rehabilitation of the historic Mancos Times-Tribune building in Mancos, CO with its unique Cranston printing press. The goal is to support the creation of a new graphic arts center in Mancos. Interest began when historic preservation students and faculty from UPenn conducting volunteer preservation work outside Mancos, discovered the building and its preserved interior and offered to document and record the structure and prepare a Historic Structures Assessment and conservation analysis of the interior and exterior. Encouraged by the group’s interest and findings, representatives of several local groups organized to form the Mancos Common Press, a Colorado non-profit that operates under the fiscal umbrella of Mancos Valley Resources
The group approached Ballantine Development, who owned the property at the time. In December 2014 Ballantine Development, LLC, generously donated the Times-Tribune building and its historical contents to the Mancos Common Press, under the auspices of Mancos Valley Resources. In addition, Richard Ballantine joined the steering committee to support the project moving forward and especially in the continued role the historic building will play in the redevelopment of Mancos.
The Town of Mancos is located in Southwest Colorado in the shadow of Mesa Verde National Park. The town itself is a small ranching community with a population of about 1300. Cattle drives still commonly move through downtown during the spring and fall. At the same time a thriving artists’ community has developed.