History Colorado creates a better future for Colorado by inspiring wonder in our past.
At History Colorado, we believe in making Colorado’s history accessible and in creating opportunities that connect people to Colorado and our past to cultivate an informed future. We are Colorado!
Established in 1879, History Colorado is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization and an agency of the State of Colorado under the Department of Higher Education. We are the trusted leader in helping people understand what it means to be a Coloradan—by sharing powerful stories, honoring our state’s treasured memories, and creating vibrant communities.
We offer access to Colorado’s history through cultural and heritage resources like our museums and historic sites statewide, programs for families and adults, stewardship of Colorado’s historic treasures, and resources for students and teachers making a positive impact on preschoolers, students in grades K-12, and those in higher education. We provide programs and services related to historic preservation and archaeology as well as access to a vast collection of archives, artifacts, and historical photography.
We strive to be a place of belonging for all Coloradans and to serve as a platform for community connection. We’re committed to Colorado’s diverse communities through programs like We Are Colorado. We know we’re making a positive impact when we can make a personal, Colorado connection between one’s individual story and Colorado’s shared history.
Our History Colorado Center opened in 2012 in Denver’s Golden Triangle Creative District. An award-winning tourist destination and a hub of learning and entertainment, the center houses core exhibits along with traveling exhibitions through our Smithsonian Affiliation. It offers public programs, events, and educational programs that foster cultural understanding through authentic perspectives. The History Colorado Center is also home to the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation, State Historical Fund, and Stephen H. Hart Research Center—the portal to our entire collection.
History Colorado’s museums and historic sites include the Center for Colorado Women’s History, El Pueblo History Museum, the Fort Garland Museum & Cultural Center, Fort Vasquez, the Georgetown Loop Historic Mining & Railroad Park®, the Healy House Museum and Dexter Cabin, the Trinidad History Museum, and the Ute Indian Museum.
We are a charitable, nonprofit organization committed to making a statewide impact. As part of History Colorado, the State Historical Fund’s historic preservation grants program has awarded more than 4,500 grants in all 64 counties across Colorado, resulting in a total impact of more than $1.07 billion on Colorado’s economy since the program’s inception in 1993.
As the State Historic Preservation Office, the Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation assists with archaeological permitting, nominations to the National and State Registers, certification of county and municipal preservation programs, approval of federal and state preservation tax credits, and review of the effects of federal projects on historic resources. The office also maintains a database of archaeological and historical resources throughout Colorado.
At its heart, History Colorado fosters cultural understanding, preserves and protects the physical, cultural, and emotional places that are important to our communities, and encourages appreciation of what makes Colorado Colorado.
Come visit us and connect to Colorado’s rich history. You just might find yourself inspired by the wonder in our past.
We acknowledge that the land currently known as Colorado has been the traditional homelands of Indigenous peoples since time immemorial. We are grateful to work in partnership with the 48 sovereign nations who continue to call this land home. Together, we plan exhibits; collect, preserve, and interpret artifacts; do archaeological work; tell the stories of Colorado's original peoples in our publications; and create educational programs to share the history of Colorado.
View our anti-racism grounding virtues by downloading this pdf.