From farmland to suburb: Bal Swan and the Turnpike Land Co.

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise.

In the late 1950s, Broomfield was poised on the brink of transformation from farm and ranchland to a brand-new suburb of Denver. The people making this happen had formed a corporation called the Turnpike Land Co. This was a privately-held corporation with fewer than 20 stockholders, among whom was President Dwight D. Eisenhower, a fishing buddy of the principal owners. Continue reading

The Birth of a 1950s Suburb: Broomfield Heights

This article first appeared in The Broomfield Enterprise.

In August of 1955, the Boulder Daily Camera announced the creation of a sparkling new city located in the countryside between Denver and Boulder called “Broomfield Heights.”

The modern new city was located on the sprawling Zang property, known as the Elmwood Stock Farm or Elmwood Ranch. Continue reading

Y’all were never part of Texas’

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise June 17, 2007.

A couple years ago, my nephew, Chas, and I went out to dinner with a colleague of mine visiting from Texas. During an otherwise pleasant and predictable meal, this colleague suddenly announced, “Y’all were part of Texas once, you know.” Continue reading

Train softened hard limits of early living

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise (Jan. 18, 2009).

I am one of those people eagerly awaiting a Fastrax line through Broomfield. I envision a stress-free zip up to Denver or downtown Boulder. I’ll sit by the window with a good book and listen to the pleasant clickety-clack. No parking hassles, nobody cutting me off, no traffic jams. Continue reading

For love of the pioneer cemetery: Riverside and Lakeview

This article first appeared in the Broomfield Enterprise (6/21/2009).

I have a special fondness for one particular historical site in Denver – the grande dame of Denver burial grounds: Riverside Cemetery. Established in 1876, Riverside is well-known for its ornate headstones and statuary. My family has a 125-year-old plot, and my parents are buried there. Continue reading