Colorado Stories

Creating Community

From the mountains to the plains to the plateaus, Colorado’s people are as diverse as the places they call home. Colorado Stories is a community-based exhibit with eight media- and artifact-rich galleries exploring the many ways that Coloradans create community.

Things to See and Do

Resilience: The Ute Indian Tribes, Time Immemorial to Today
Since time immemorial, Ute people have faced challenges and made the decisions that keep themselves true to their identity. Ute tribes are the original Coloradans, maintaining strong values of family, leadership, culture, and sustainability.

Mountain Haven: Lincoln Hills, 1925–1965
Coloradans love the outdoors. But African Americans were once barred from leisure opportunities most whites took for granted. Explore a Rocky Mountain haven where African Americans could hike, fish, and camp—and leave discrimination behind.
Click to flip through a Lincoln Hills photo album.
Click to experience the online exhibit!

Jumping for Joy: Steamboat Springs, 1915
Mountain men, mail carriers, and miners ranged the Rockies on skis. Pretty soon, people figured out skiing was fun! Norwegian ski champion Carl Howelsen taught Steamboat’s children to fly. Now it’s your turn to make the leap!

Convergence: Bent’s Fort, 1833–1849
Weary Santa Fe Trail travelers cheered when they saw the adobe “Castle on the Plains” — a marketplace like no other. Explore this outpost of Manifest Destiny on Colorado’s Plains through a touch table and archaeological artifacts.
Click to experience the online exhibit!

Top of the World: A Silverton Silver Mine, around 1880
Hard-rock mining is hard! In Silverton, miners were mountaineers, gouging ore out of deep snow and steep granite slopes. Do you have what it takes? The shift boss is hiring!

Confined Citizens: The Amache-Granada Relocation Center, 1942–1945
After Pearl Harbor, 120,000 Japanese and Japanese Americans were forced into internment camps—including one in Colorado called “Amache.” Half of Colorado’s newly imprisoned population were children. Two-thirds were American citizens. None was accused of a crime.
Click to experience the online exhibit!

Borderlands, 1700–Today
I didn’t cross the border, the border crossed me.’ Living between rival empires, Coloradans learned what that meant. Ute, Spanish, Comanche, French, Apache, Mexican, and American leaders redrew borders and redefined empires—leaving people a bewildering variety of languages, laws, and beliefs.