Talk Colorado Wine & Colorado's Wine Country: Curtis Talley, Palisade Wine Pioneer, Passes

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Curtis Talley, Palisade Wine Pioneer, Passes

The and owners and staff of the Wine Country Inn offer our sincere condolences to the Family of Curtis Talley, 85. One of the first growers in the valley to plant wine grapes after Prohibition, Talley was an instrumental force in turning Palisade into Colorado's Wine Country.

Under the headline, "Grower Was A Peach of A Teacher," The Denver Post wrote:

"Curtis Talley loved peaches.

"He loved them so much he raised them, ate them, made wine out of them and taught people how to grow them.

"Talley, a longtime Palisade farmer and teacher, died Nov. 20 in Delta. He was 85.

"Talley had a 40-acre farm near Palisade and tended it after his teaching duties each day at Palisade High School. His wife and four kids all had jobs in the business: picking, sorting, de-fuzzing, boxing and canning of peaches, said his daughter Donna Deleff of Delta.

"The kids started helping at age 5 and continued through high school. Deleff said she can remember her first salary being 5 cents an hour.

"The family canned about 50 quarts of peaches a year, Deleff said.

"Talley was named Peach Grower of the Year in 1971.

"He also was the Future Farmers of America adviser and organized and taught fruit-growing classes at night. He taught agriculture, farm mechanics, welding and woodworking in his 32 years at Palisade High School, retiring in 1983.

"Talley was one of the first farmers to plant wine grapes in the Grand Valley in the late 1960s.

"He made peach wine in the basement, but usually didn't drink it. "He was a beer person," Deleff said."

He is survived by daughter, Rhonda Moore of Grand Junction; and two sons, Curtis Talley Jr. of Montague, Mich., and Dick Talley of Grand Junction; 10 grandchildren and six great- grandchildren; and two brothers, David Talley of Espa├▒ola, N.M., and Vallon Talley of Palisade.

You can read the rest of the obituary here.

Talley was also a distant relative of the Tally family, who owns the Wine Country Inn.

We wish the Talley family all the best in the days ahead.


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your kind words about Dad. It was very thoughtful of you to remember him and all he did for The Valley. He was also an awesome grandpa. On behalf of the family, I thank you. Donna Deleff and her son, Michael

Wine Country Inn said...

You're welcome, Donna and Michael. Mr. Tally did a lot for the valley and the wine community, and it is important to remember his contributions.

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