The mansard roof with either concave or straight sides is the key to distinguishing the Second Empire style. Although not extremely common in Colorado, high style examples exist, most notably the Tabor Hotel in Leadville, the Bloom House in Trinidad, and the Maxwell House in Georgetown. Additional characteristics include a projecting bay or tower extending above the roofline, either contoured or to one side, pedimented windows or molded surrounds, quoins and roof cresting. Cornices are bracketed, reminiscent of the Italianate style.
Simpler variations may be found in small homes. The major elements of the style visible on these small residences are the mansard roof and pedimented windows.