Western History and Genealogy News
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Denver Public Library
Western History and Genealogy News
January 2017

Recent Blog Posts

BEFORE THERE WAS A 16TH STREET MALL

BEFORE THERE WAS A 16TH STREET MALL

In 2014, the Denver Public Library's Western History and Genealogy Department acquired an interesting collection of over 400 color photographs of modern Denver. The Thorney Lieberman Photographs (C Photo Collection 445) document the 16th Street Mall just before the streetscape was redesigned and transformed into a pedestrian mall. The images capture a distinctly less thriving and less congested downtown Denver than what you'd see there today. Read more  

DENVER'S BIGGEST BLIZZARD, EVER - WOW PHOTO WEDNESDAY

DENVER'S BIGGEST BLIZZARD, EVER - WOW PHOTO WEDNESDAY

If you're a fan of Colorado weather trivia the dates December 1-5, 1913 are certain to grab your attention. That's when the city was hit with the worst blizzard in its recorded history. 

During that five-day period, the Mile High City was pummeled with an unbelievable 45.7 inches of snow and some mountain towns saw as much as 60 inches of the white stuff.  Read more

THOMAS WASHINGTON BEAN (1885-1987) A LIFE OF "FIRSTS"

THOMAS WASHINGTON BEAN (1885-1987) A LIFE OF "FIRSTS"

Thomas Washington Bean was an astute African American business pioneer. He was considered one of the most successful businessmen in Denver. Bean was born in Louisville, Kentucky on December 17, 1885. He came to Denver in 1911, on the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad, and worked as a dining car steward. Bean liked Denver and decided to stay. His life was full of "firsts," which included operating music vending machines in Denver's businesses, being the first African American to operate a taxicab service in Denver, and being the first African American to serve on the Denver Board of Adjustment Zoning, from 1957 until 1980. Read more

 

WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE?

WHO ARE YOU PEOPLE?

At first glance, this week's photo appears to be a promotional photo from an '80s TV detective series about a professional bowler who solves crimes with the help of an amateur production of Grease. That, however, is not entirely accurate. 

The dashing man with the shirt, tie and bowling ball is former Denver District Attorney Norm Early. While Early certainly prosecuted plenty of criminals during his career, that work happened in a courtroom, not at Celebrity Sports Center (whose iconic logo is visible in the background). Read more

 

RESEARCH

Civil War Genealogy And History

Civil War Genealogy And History

This bibliography is intended to provide researchers with a guide to the unique Civil War books in the Western History and Genealogy collection. These include official records, multi-volume reference sets, and older books and periodicals that are essential sources for Civil War history and genealogy. The vast array of Civil War books in the circulating collection and the databases available online are not covered in this selection. Read more

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