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Can you imagine the city without the Daniels & Fisher Tower, LoDo, or Union Station? Each contributes critical character to our community, each anchors significant economic revitalization efforts that have helped Denver weather several boom and bust cycles, and each was saved with the support of Historic Denver, Inc. In 1970 citizens stepped forward to create Historic Denver, Inc., which first focused on saving the Molly Brown House Museum from demolition and went on to citywide efforts. Historic Denver remains the city’s leading preservation organization and as a private, supporter-driven non-profit we work to protect and promote the places that add to our quality of life, spur economic development and engender pride of place.Our success is achieved with advocacy, technical services, educational programs, events, and through the direct stewardship of historic resources through our grant management program and through our flagship property, the Molly Brown House Museum.
Molly Brown House Museum
Serving as the catalyst for the founding of Historic Denver in 1970, the Molly Brown House Museum has continued to be the organization’s flagship property and central educational resource. The Museum currently serves more than 45,000 visitors a year, and offers year-round programming, exhibitions and events. The Museum works to enhance educational resources for school groups as an on-going and important element of Historic Denver’s mission. In 2012 the Museum will participate in the worldwide commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, which takes places April 12 – 14. Learn more at www.mollybrown.org.
Historic Denver works with students across the metro area to provide immersive and interactive opportunities to engage with local heritage and architecture. Since the 1990s, Historic Denver has been a leader in providing outreach programs in the schools, serving more than 7,000 students in 2011 alone. Looking forward, the organization plans to enhance learning resources by developing a publication for students, a downtown exploration program and related teacher materials, including lesson plans and local history curricula.
While preservationists will always be concerned with outstanding individual landmarks, the quality and character of the City’s entire fabric, from urban to suburban neighborhoods, is also important. Historic Denver offers technical assistance to owners of historic homes across the metro-area. Offerings include workshops on hot topics like masonry restoration, windows, energy efficiency and how to use the Colorado State Preservation Tax credit. Much of this information is available on-line at www.historicdenver.org/resources.
Historic Denver, Inc. has a 40 year history of serving as a leading advocate for the preservation, promotion and creative re-use of important historic landmarks, historic homes and significant landscapes. This has included support for numerous district and landmark designations, educational programs, hands-on training and countless meetings with neighborhoods, business leaders and elected officials.
Denver Story Trek
In 2008, Historic Denver launched a city-wide heritage tourism collaboration entitled “Denver Story Trek.” Denver Story Trek provides free, interactive content about historic places right on the street. The program includes a printed brochure and map, an interactive website, physical signage and cell-phone provided audio content. Story Trek is based on the premise that the more people know about a place the more likely they are to take care of it. Story Trek is ever-expanding, and every Denver resident is invited to participate by recording their own recollections of the places of Denver’s past. Learn more at www.denverstorytrek.org.
Discover Denver: A Citywide Building Survey
In 2012 Historic Denver will launch the pilot phase of Discover Denver, a comprehensive exploration of the city’s built environment. Using new technologies and an innovative methodology this project will provide data on potentially historic sites throughout the city. The information will be accessible and useful to property owners, city officials, planners, neighborhoods and individuals. The multi-year project is a partnership with the City of Denver with funding from the Colorado State Historical Fund.
For many years Historic Denver has published a series of popular walking tour/guidebooks about Denver’s historic neighborhoods and architecture. Currently the series includes more than 22 titles including the 7th Avenue Historic District, Denver: the Modern City, Lower Downtown Historic District, Sacred Landmarks and Denver Women and their Places. The books are available from $5-$10 each in local retailers and at www.historicdenver.org. Historic Denver also publishes and distributes the popular Denver the City Beautiful book by Tom Noel and Barbara Norgren.
The stewardship of Denver’s historic places has always been a cornerstone of Historic Denver’s programming. Much of our physical restoration work is completed through our Sacred Landmarks program, which provides project management, technical expertise and grant-assistance to historic churches, synagogues and mosques using grant funds from the Colorado State Historical Fund. In addition to working with sacred places, Historic Denver actively seeks other grant-supported projects that improve our city, such as the care and restoration of Union Station, the rehabilitation of the Capitol Hill Bed & Breakfast and work at the historic Oxford Hotel.