Brothels, Bordellos, and Bad Girls

  • by Jan Mackell
  • Narrated by Laura Jennings
  • 9 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Prostitution thrived in pioneer Colorado. Mining was the principal occupation and men outnumbered women more than twenty to one. Jan MacKell provides a detailed overview of the business between 1860 and 1930, focusing her research on the mining towns of Cripple Creek, Salida, Colorado City, and similar boomtown communities. She used census data, Sanborn maps, city directories, property records, marriage records, and court records to document and trace the movements of the women over the course of their careers, uncovering work histories, medical problems, and numerous relocations from town to town. She traces many to their graves, through years filled with abuse, disease, narcotics, and violence.
The book is published by University of New Mexico Press.


What the Critics Say

"Delicacy, humor, respect, and compassion are among the merits of this book. Although other authors have flirted with Colorado's commercial sex, Jan MacKell provides a detailed overview. She has been researching these elusive women for the last fifteen years. Such persistence allows her to offer rich detail on shady ladies who rarely used their real names or even stuck with the same professional name for long." (Thomas J. Noel, from the Introduction)
"The topic is interesting, the author knowledgeable, the presentation nonjudgmental...All sorts of interesting facts pop up in this work." (USA Today)
"Now this is a book you can read in one sitting. Not that it is less than scholarly; it is comprehensive, extensively researched, well organized, well written, but most of all it is readable. In fact, it is compelling. Brothels, Bordellos, & Bad Girls is a fascinating book because it puts a human face on prostitution." (Roundup Magazine)


See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful


This is a really fascinating book, apparently very well researched, well-written, and very entertaining as well. It's a shame that the reader doesn't seem to understand the significance of paragraphs in written English. She spaces every sentence in the book exactly the same distance for the previous one regardless whether the ideas in them are connected in any way whatsoever. It's VERY distracting from a history that deserves much better. The book is worth putting up with the shortcomings of the performance, anyway.
Read full review

- John

Ruined by narrator.

This could have and should have been a great book. I thought it would go into the lives of some of the women, but instead it's just about their lifestyle. There are so many great stories about the women of those days, I can't figure out why the author didn't tell them. The narrator is horrible! She talks so fast, it made me out and o f breath just listening. Too bad that a great subject was written and narrated so poorly.
Read full review

- B Rose

Book Details

  • Release Date: 10-30-2013
  • Publisher: University Press Audiobooks