Major Henry McAllister was an influential, enthusiastic, and talented promoter, organizer, speaker, and campaigner in the early days of the planning of General Palmer’s resort city of Colorado Springs.
Even before moving West, he was making speeches and selling Colorado land in Philadelphia. Upon moving his family here in 1873, he was the Executive Director of the Colorado Springs Company and was constantly busy locating the desired buyers for Palmer’s dream city. Through his efforts Colorado Springs became a temperance city and remained so until after the repeal of prohibition.
He resigned from this position in 1879 but continued his activities for the community until his death in 1921. He was President of the Board of Town Trustees, temporary editor of the Outwest newspaper, Vice president of the State Horticultural Society, Chief Clerk to the Board of County Commissioners, and founding member of the El Paso County Pioneers Association.
It was Major McAllister who persuaded the Congregational Church to build its Colorado College in Colorado Springs rather than Denver. He was on the building committee in the early years and was a trustee of the college until his death.
Having been influenced by his Quaker mother, he highly regarded and respected the rights of women. Thus, he became a member of the Colorado Women’s Suffrage Society Executive Committee.
He had mining interests in the San Juan valley in Colorado, but was always a man of modest means.
Interestingly he gave several speeches on a variety of subjects including poets and poetry, the bulls and bears on Wall Street, and the proceedings of the National Republican Convention at Cincinnati. It was said that he could hold the rapt attention of an audience for more than an hour.