I distinctly remember four news events before the age of ten.
The murder of JonBenét Ramsey
The death of Princess Diana
The Columbine High School massacre
Two of these events happened less than an hour away from my home in Thornton, Colorado. This Saturday will mark the 20 year anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre and since that time mass shootings have become more and more frequent, even commonplace.
I spend a lot of time driving down Colfax Avenue. I love looking at all the different neon signs, murals, and architecture that reside on it. One of my favorite murals is an art nouveau inspired piece. I’ve always wanted to know the artist behind it, so I decided to do a little Google search. To my surprise, I found that the mural was done over an American Beauty Pasta ghost sign that had been defaced.
At the center of the Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, CO lies the old the Fitzsimons Army Hospital or also known as Building 500. These days the old hospital is used for office space for the continuously growing Colorado University (CU) operated campus, but at one time this building served to be one of the most important developments to ever happen to the Denver Metro Area.
The Story of Fitzsimons Army Hospitals past. @wikimedia
The Fitzsimons Army Hospital was the place where President Eisenhower recovered from his heart attack back in 1954, the birthplace of former Secretary of State and Presidential Nominee, John Kerry, and the home to a bustling military community.
This past week, the Aspen born coffee company, Ink! received negative press over a mind boggling sign they displayed at their Five Points location. The sign proudly read “Happily gentrifying the neighborhood since 2014.”, in the historically black neighborhood. Much to no surprise this resulted in the store being vandalized, a protest, and national press. It’s hard to believe that any professional would sit there and think that this was a good idea or maybe they were too busy smoking Colorado’s biggest GDP contributor.
Last weekend I did something unexpected, instead of viewing the changing leaves in well known areas such as Kebler Pass or Maroon Bells; I saw the changing leaves in an old graveyard.
It was my lovely friend’s idea and I can say that it was much more invigorating than just seeing trees on a roadside pass. Nestled in the town of Central City lies a series of cemeteries. The most notable one in the area is called Knights of Pythias Cemetery.
I sadly cannot find too much info on the history of this particular cemetery. It does not seem to be the only grave-site with that name in the United States. Doing a bit of research, I have found that the Knights of Pythias is a secret society that was founded in the mid to late 1800s. In order to become a member of the Knight of Pythias, you must be over the age of 18, not drink or gamble and believe in a supreme being. Interesting enough, famous figures such as Louis Armstrong and Franklin D. Roosevelt are reported as being part of this society.
Colorado just lost one of its most influential art icons, Lawrence Argent; the man who is most notably known for creating the giant blue bear that peers inside the Colorado Convention Center. The blue bear oddly enough is the second iconic giant blue statue in Denver. What can I say? We really like giant blue animals in Colorado.
Lawrence Argent was not native to Colorado but was in fact born overseas in Essex, England. He spent most of his childhood years in Australia and came to America after he finished his education. He came to Colorado in 1993 when he landed a teaching job at the School of Art and Art History at the University of Denver. Since that time he has called Colorado home and has made numerous contributions to its art culture.
This Monday marks the first time that a total solar eclipse has been truly present across the United States from coast to coast since 1918. The last time a total eclipse was present, Denver had an ideal view of the event with 100% total coverage.
This time around, the citizens of Denver will only have 94% coverage and will sadly not get to experience all the special phenomenon that is present during a total eclipse. That doesn’t mean eclipse mania has not hit. Many Coloradoans are traveling up to our neighbors in Wyoming to view of the event and special eclipse viewing glasses are hard to find.
Welcome to the Denverite Express. In the future you will find posts dedicated to hidden treasures, forgotten histories, or just curious finds I come across relating back to my home in Colorado and the American West. Here I hope to establish a sense of appreciation for the unique world I have grown with and to also expand my horizons .
Today is Aug. 1st, Colorado day, so I thought today would be the perfect day to begin the little adventures I wish to take you all on.
At the moment posts will be restricted to primarily on a monthly basis, but I hope to be more active in the future. If you need something to tie you over, check out my work on Messy Nessy Chic or just check out the website in general. It’s a rabbit hole full of interesting little treats.