A colorful mural depicting an eagle whose wings form the faces of Chicana women. On one side is a modern chicano athlete, on the other side is an Indigenous person participating in a ritual.

Colorado Heritage for All

As part of the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, and the 150th anniversary of Colorado's statehood, History Colorado is embarking on an ambition project to change the way we look at community preservation: Colorado Heritage for All. The goal of this project is to identify 150 currently unrecognized spaces and places that tell the stories of communities of color, women, and LGBTQ+ Coloradans, and to add all of these sites to the state Register of Historic Places by the end of 2026.

Historic places don't only offer a connection to our past, they help to build identities, boost understanding of contemporary places, and strengthen communities in a variety of ways. But not all communities have been treated equally. Too often, important histories and places are obscured or erased by our preservation practices. Less than 3% of the buildings and sites on Colorado's Register of Historic Places represent the stories of our state's Black, Indigenous, Latino, Chicano, Asian American, and LGBTQ+ communities. The same patterns appear on the National Register of Historic Places, and local preservation programs across the country.

Breaking this pattern would require innovation and investment, as well as a rethinking of preservation policies, to reshape the Colorado Register of Historic Places as a tool of inclusion accessible to all communities.

To achieve this goal, History Colorado will invest in three major innovations:

  • Implementing an inclusive outreach approach, to engage communities of many backgrounds from across the state in identifying the places and spaces that tell their stories.
  • Developing a next-generation workforce that will support community preservation on several levels.
  • Addressing barriers encountered by communities of color and other disenfranchised groups within the preservation policies and processes.
Tour of San Luis, Colorado by Move Mountains Youth Leaders
Couple at The Dry farming community
A group of African American teenage campers and their counselors stand near a camp building at Camp Nizhoni in Lincoln Hills (Gilpin County), Colorado. Some hold large sticks. They wear shorts, overalls, pants, shirts, dresses and hats.
An aerial view of Amache from the camp's water tower.
Black American West Museum
A mural depicting the indigenous goddess Huitzilopochtli
A colorful, geometric mural on the side of a pool building. The photo is visibly aged and the color has faded.