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Thursday - April 15, 2021

Archive for the ‘ History of Boulder ’ Category

 

Pearl Street’s Quick ‘N Dirty Backstory

April 14th, 2021

A Boulder resident in the 1940s remarked that Pearl street is “a good place to buy a pair of socks.” I think this adage holds true today, and that Pearl offers Boulder exponentially more to go along with those socks. Pearl Street is supposedly named for one of the wives of the original 54 founders of Boulder. However, I have also heard whispers that “Pearl” was a madam of a brothel once located near what is now Pearl Street. The first explanation is more likely, though I find the second more provocative and appealing. If I had to describe Pearl Street, I would say it’s an intermingling... Read More

Boulder’s Terrifying Mascot from the 1980s!

April 9th, 2021

Meet “Buddy Boulder,” the mascot proving that even the gleaming citizens of Boulder sometimes make bad decisions. Or eerie ones at the very least. How was this grinning stone created? Well, in 1984 the Boulder Hotel and Motel Association had a “Mascot Mania” event whereby people were allowed to submit mascot ideas for the city of Boulder. The winners received cash prizes. You would think money would be incentive to create something inviting and recognizable. Sure, Buddy has the Flatirons on his head, but we just can’t stop looking at his cold, shifty, doll eyes. The... Read More

The Beginnings of Boulder

April 8th, 2021

The story of Boulder, Colorado begins roughly 300 million years ago when our iconic Flatirons formed the seabed of the ocean that covered the better part of the North American continent. This sea, the Western Interior Seaway, ate away at the sandstone beneath it until it began to resemble the shape of the Flatirons we all know and love. It was not until about 40 million years ago that the Flatirons shifted into their present position when the Rocky Mountains were created, becoming part of the “Fountain Formation.” This formation includes other spectacular Colorado landmarks including the Red... Read More

Explaining Boulder County’s Name and Shape

April 7th, 2021

Most of the West was divided up into straight-edged, boxy regions and subdivisions (take a look at poor Yuma County). Boulder County escapes the purely rectangular form of other counties in Colorado, and today we will tell you why. Plus, we will tell you why it’s named Boulder (but we bet you can guess). The need for Colorado to become a territory coincided with the secession of several southern states from the Union in 1861. Colorado applied for statehood that year, and offered the Union secure access to precious mineral deposits. Boulder County was one of the original 17 counties of... Read More

5 Boulder Musicians You Should Know

April 5th, 2021

Josephine Antoine This fair Boulderite was beloved for her incredible rise to fame as a Metropolitan Opera star. After completing her education in Boulder, Antoine went on to earn a Master’s at the Julliard School of Music in NYC. Before her first national appearance, she received a telegram from the mayor of Boulder reading: “Every citizen sends you love and good wishes for your performance tomorrow.” She was a success, and sang the lead in 14 Metropolitan Opera productions. Her singing was featured on national radio stations, and she returned to Boulder to perform at the Colorado... Read More

What the Heck is a Chautauqua?

April 2nd, 2021

Every Boulderite knows that Chautauqua is up on 900 Baseline Road in Boulder, but how did it get there? And what is a Chautauqua anyway? The Chautauqua movement of the late 19th century was an effort to educate rural communities who lacked access to the mass culture being developed in cities. The movement lasted from the 1870s all the way into the 1920s. Rural peoples were hungry for entrainment and brain food, but lacked a way to easily travel because automobiles weren’t widely available until 1910. The “Mother Chautauqua” (which sounds a bit like a spaceship name to me) was... Read More

Girl Power!!! The History of Women in Boulder

March 31st, 2021

In a recent study in Boulder, it was found that the city is leading the nation on gender equity. Currently, the national average for women’s wages are 84% of what men make. In Boulder the average is 88%. Boulder is obviously a special city, leading the nation in multiple avenues from preventative measures for climate change to progressive gender equality. This got me thinking about famous women in Boulder and the steps they have taken to catalyze change in their city and nation. If you were lucky enough to visit the Pioneers: Women Artists in Boulder exhibit last year at the Art Museum at... Read More

Lights, Camera, Action! — The history of movies filmed in Colorado

March 25th, 2021

Ah, the Oscars. A time for us to rewind and remember all of the films that made us laugh, squeal, cry, and brim over with feeling. Over the weekend, we saw the awards go to Moonlight, Zootopia, and La La Land, and witnessed the emotional acceptances of some of the winners. I thought it would be interesting to look back on some of the famous movies that have been filmed right here in Boulder and in some of our close neighboring cities. Perhaps the most famous recent film shot in Colorado was “The Hateful Eight”, Tarantino’s latest film which featured a bounty hunter and his prisoner seeking... Read More

Old North Boulder = New Central Boulder

March 22nd, 2021

The area between Broadway, Folsom, Iris, and Edgewood/Balsam streets is now commonly called the Old North Boulder neighborhood. Before the land was developed beyond Norwood, this area was North Boulder. Now with development stretching to the far reaches of the Dakota Ridge neighborhood, the Old North Boulder neighborhood is really in central Boulder. This neighborhood is serviced by a hospital, offices, and two small shopping centers. Originally, the Ideal Market center was named the Drive-In Ideal Market and was built in 1958 – named as such for the novelty of having a parking lot in front... Read More

Where was Boulder’s Dushanbe Teahouse Made?

March 20th, 2021

One of the most common pieces of advice a Boulderite will give to a new resident is “Go check out the Dushanbe Teahouse,” but what’s so special about a teahouse? Well, ours was handcrafted in Tajikistan during the Cold War, and kindly shipped by our sister city of Dushanbe. The rebuilding of the teahouse in Boulder was an awesome accomplishment which nearly did not happen. The idea of a sister city or twin town developed from the Cold War following WWII. The point was to form legal and social bonds between disparate cultures, and even promote relationships between former enemies.... Read More

Boulder’s Intellectualism Shapes its True Character

March 4th, 2021

Some of you have heard that Boulder is “25 square miles surrounded by reality”. Which is one way to say that the character of the city of Boulder is extremely different from other nearby cities. Today we will discuss how intellectualism has helped to create this unique reputation. There is a huge focus on anti-intellectualism in the United States. Many folks, especially politicians, discredit Education, Literature, Philosophy, Art, and Science as pursuits which are mostly impractical. None of these subjects seem vital for the “common man” to know. None of them will help... Read More

History of Some Badass Boulder Women

February 21st, 2021

Revealing Our Routes: Women of Boulder County was originally developed by the Women of the West Museum back in 2002. Now the exhibit is now hosted by Boulder History Museum’s site. There are dozens of dynamic ladies documented in this collection, and today we’ve brought you a few of our favorites. Ruth Cave Flowers (1903-1980) was a native Boulderite who graduated from Boulder high in 1920. Because she was African-American they refused to award her a diploma featuring her catchy name. Despite her lack of diploma, CU accepted Ruth Flowers as a student. She earned a doctorate in Romance... Read More

Complex Origins of Boulder’s Fox Theatre

February 20th, 2021

The grand red sign and huge white marquee of Boulder’s Fox Theatre give the building a sense of purpose and permanence. This strong identity boldly contrasts the complex and confusing history of the building itself. This nearly 90 year old space has housed vaudeville acts, a cafe, and a other interesting things in between. The building sitting at 1135 13th Street on The Hill was constructed in 1926 by Adrian G. Diez, but was first owned a Mr. William Beach. Beach sold the building to Diez in 1926, and the building changed hands no less than 8 times to become what it is today. Its first... Read More

From Canvas to Streets– Street Art in Boulder

February 17th, 2021

Recently, walking around Boulder and taking in the sites, I’ve noticed an ample amount of street art, most notably drawn/painted/stenciled by SMiLE, an anonymous Boulder artist. SMiLE’s repertoire ranges from portraits of Jack Kerouac and Brad Pitt, to a menagerie of animals, most especially cats. A little less than a year ago SMiLE had an exhibition in Boulder titled ‘Streets to Canvas’, and made a profound statement on the website promoting the event. SMiLE states, “Art has always been in the vanguard of the worlds changing consciousness, and Street Art is the contemporary form of this... Read More

A Brief History of CU Boulder

February 17th, 2021

Boulder’s first schoolhouse opened in 1860, but it was far from the last school to be built here! The University of Colorado in Boulder was established in the early 1870s when the Colorado territorial legislature made an amendment to the constitution that provided money for three universities. CU was, of course, one. The other two were the Colorado School of Mines in Golden and the Colorado Agricultural College in Fort Collins, both of which still exist today. But at first, there was some debate about exactly where to put the new university. Two cities were competing for it: Boulder and Cañon... Read More

Why’s Boulder so Great for Start-ups?

February 17th, 2021

The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, based in Missouri, found that Boulder Colorado had the highest density of start-up companies per capita in the United States. Most of these sprouting businesses are technology-based, and many start and eventually settle in the city. But what is it about Boulder which makes it a breeding ground for new business? First of all, Boulder’s culture spans the distance between nature-loving outdoorsy people and highly-educated tech creators. To the west are the glorious Flatirons and innumerable natural wonders, meanwhile the university is researching more... Read More

Why Does Boulder Have A “Greenbelt”?

February 16th, 2021

You may hear Boulderites referring to a “greenbelt,” but what is that and why does Boulder have one? There was huge population growth in Boulder between 1950 and 1970. This growth was due to the presence of the University of Colorado, the intellectual diversity surrounding the university, and a strong local economy. At an annual growth rate of about 6%, the population of the city was set to double every 11 years or so. Being all about sustainability and preserving local culture, the citizens of Boulder took action against the human tsunami threatening to wash out the city. In 1967... Read More

Alfalfa’s – Cornerstone of a Community

February 16th, 2021

Boulder’s history is interwoven with the history of the natural food industry. As many of you know, big companies like Rudi Bakery, White Wave Tofu, Horizon dairy, Coleman Beef, Pharmaca, Celestial Seasonings, and more new brands offering whole, delicious and healthy alternatives for Boulder’s picky eaters (myself included) got their start pushing their wares at Alfalfa’s Market. The story of the making of this international movement has roots in Boulder. As I mentioned in my last article, the health movement came to Boulder around the turn of the 20th century with many folks coming to... Read More

6 Famous Boulderites You Should Know

February 4th, 2021

We can’t say for sure if being in Boulder makes you a better or more successful person, but these celebrities from our fair city lend some credibility to the notion. And since we aren’t a gossip site, these won’t all be film and TV stars. We are showing you real people from Boulder who did, and are doing, interesting and popular things with their lives. 3OH!3 Sean Foreman and Nathaniel Motte make up the electronica group 3OH!3, which received national success with their song “Don’t Trust Me”. They gained even more attention when they collaborated with Ke$ha... Read More

Are the Boulder Flatirons Remnants of Ancient Beaches?

February 4th, 2021

You will learn how Boulder’s iconic Flatirons formed. Turns out, Boulder was once beachfront property. The Flatirons are Boulder’s favorite portion of the Fountain Formation, a geological formation of mostly red sandstone. This sandstone, more appropriately called “arkose” gets its color from the pinkish feldspar contained it it. This red rock makes up the Red Rocks of Morrison and the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs. The Fountain Formation stretches from Colorado Springs all the way to Wyoming. The reddish color is due to the concentration of feldspar in the sandstone,... Read More