The Colorado State Capitol building in Denver has a brass cap positioned at 5,280 feet above sea level, lending the city the title the “Mile High City.” The 16th Street Mall connects the Capitol Building with LoDo (“Lower Downtown”), the cultural district that a century ago was home to Bat Masterson, Calamity Jane and other frontier icons. One of the city’s newest architectural icons is the Hamilton Building of the Denver Museum of Art, which mimics the peaks of the Rocky Mountains and the geometric rock crystals found in the Denver foothills. The building’s 9,000 titanium panels reflect the Colorado sunshine. The Colorado State History Museum, which explains the dramatic geology of the region, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, the Denver Visitor Center, and the Molly Brown House, home of the “unsinkable” local heroine, are all nearby. Try one of the interesting restaurants in LoDo for dinner.
Begun as a gamble when the first flakes of gold were found in Cherry Creek in 1858, Denver was established as the first gold rush camp in the area. It epitomized the legends of the wild, wild, west with gunslingers, gamblers, gold miners, saloons, cattlemen and a sheriff. Very conscious that it was destined to become a major western metropolitan area, the Historical Society began in 1879, little more than 20 years after the city’s founding. Immediately after outlasting several surrounding cities for the title of capitol of the Colorado Territory, Denver began to develop a transportation network, cattle exchange, banking sector, cultural offerings, grand architecture and energy systems, working to make itself the thriving, contemporary, world class city that it is today.