History of Boulder

Boulder's original occupants were the Native American tribe of the Southern Arapaho. Their village was located near Haystack Mountain. The first non-native settlement was founded in 1858 at Red Rocks close to the entrance of Boulder Canyon by gold seekers. The Boulder City Town Company, established by A.A. Brookfield and fifty-six shareholders in 1959, issued 4044 lots priced at $1000 per unit. Originally, part of the Nebraska Territory, Colorado didn't become its own entity until 1861 when Congress created the Territory of Colorado.

Boulder experienced slow growth as it became primarily used as supply base for miners. To encourage economic stability, Boulder residents championed the creation of a railroad service, schools, and a secure town government. The first schoolhouse in the Colorado Territory was founded in Boulder at the corner of 15th Street and Walnut Street. In 1874, Boulder won the right to establish the University of Colorado and was donated a 44 acre sight to build classrooms, auditoriums, and offices.

In 1880, Boulder had accumulated over 3,000 residents and was able to formally incorporate as a city of the second class. The first courthouse was erected in 1883. It burned down in 1933; replaced in 1934, the courthouse still stands today. Amenities and services - post offices, hospitals, banks, water systems, and other necessary infrastructure - were quickly added to deal with the burgeoning population.

The famous Chautauqua Auditorium, constructed in 1897, signaled Boulder's arrival as an economically prosperous community featuring well-appointed residential neighborhoods and comprehensive education system. Tourism began to pick up in the early 20th century. To attract wealthy visitors, Boulder residents raised funds to construct a first class hotel, The Hotel Boulderado, which opened for business in 1909.

In 1920, census records show close to 13,000 residents. In 1950, that number had blossomed to a population of 20,000. The establishment of the United States Navy's Japanese Language School at Colorado University also brought many young men and women to the city.

Boulder's population rapidly increased at the completion of the turnpike to downtown Denver. In 1967, thousands of acres were purchased, which led to the adoption of the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan in 1970. The Historic Preservation Code, passed in 1974, enables Boulder to preserve substantial portions of the city's passed while advocating for the refurbishment of historical buildings. Individuals continue to flock to Boulder due its proximity to nature and excellent quality of life.