House History Research

Get started by downloading the Office of Archaeology & Historic Preservation's guide "Researching the History of Your Property" for helpful suggestions. 

More resources, listed below, are available at our Stephen H. Hart Research Center.


Search the Online Collection for books, manuscript collections, maps and serials. Useful subject headings : 

  • Architects
  • Architecture – Colorado
  • Architecture – [City]
  • Buildings – [City]
  • Historic Buildings
  • Maps – [City]
  • Name (of building or person)
  • Neighborhoods – [City]
  • Street maps – [City]


Colorado City Directories (1860s-1990s)
Colorado State Business Directories (1875 – 1956)
Denver Householder’s Directories (1926 – 1986) 
Colorado Telephone Directories (1880 – present)


Colorado Sanborn Insurance Maps (1887 – 1962) available on microfilm in the Stephen H. Hart Research Center.

CU Boulder's Map Library has digitized many Colorado Sanborn Insurance maps.


U.S. Census (Colorado) records (1860-1930) available on microfilm in the Stephen H. Hart Research Center.

Census Indexes to the U.S. Federal Census for Colorado (1860-1880)

Colorado State Census 1885 and alphabetical abstract.

Learn more about Census information and our Census holdings.


History Colorado holds the largest collection of Colorado newspapers available. The collection contains more than 1700 newspaper titles from towns across the state, which are available on microfilm and can be view at the Stephen H. Hart Research Center.  Over 650 newspapers titles are available online at the Colorado Historic Newspapers Collection. Digitized copies of the Denver PostRocky Mountain News, and selected additional titles are available onsite at the Research Center.


Some photographs are available to view online at the History Colorado Online Collection and at Denver Public Library's Digital Collections.

Other resources include:

Colorado Subject Collection (formerly ephemera files)

Subject: Architecture
Biographical: name of owner or architect
Geographical: City or town name

Compass Database

Compass is the Office of Archaeology & Historic Preservation's online cultural resource database for the state of Colorado. Site files can provide useful architectural and historical information on buildings and historic districts. Complimentary access to Compass is available onsite at the Stephen H. Hart Research Center.

Other Resources

Other agencies, such as the Colorado State Archives, County Tax Assessor's Office, or County Clerk & Recorder, may hold other useful records.