Happenings

Jefferson County Historical Commission's Historic Preservation Symposium

Contact: the Jefferson County Historical Commission Chair

On Thursday, September 16, 2021 at 7 P.M., the Jefferson County Historical Commission presents its annual Historic Preservation Symposium. Four programs will explore the fascinating story of Jefferson County history and how it is being preserved. This will be a virtual presentation on the Commission’s YouTube channel.external_site_marker

To access the Symposium, go to Youtube, log onto the site using the link, then choose Playlists and from there go to Symposium 2021. Each program will be presented for 15-20 minutes, plus there will be an introduction by Commission Chair, Lee Katherine Goldstein. The programs and presenters include:

“From a Tree to Today: Connecting Indigenous People to Jeffco Parks” Program, presented by Jennee Hancock

This program explores the Indigenous history of Jefferson County’s Open Space lands from the perspective of the Council Tree site in Morrison. Learn about the Tribes who have called this place home, the significance of the tree, the Ute leader Colorow, the native plants at the site, and how Tribes remain connected to the land today.

Jennee Hancock is an Education Specialist with Jefferson County Open Space. She has worked at Hiwan Museum in Evergreen as a guide and educator since 2009.  She loves connecting people with culture, history, nature, and each other, and especially enjoys creating and teaching children’s programs. She is honored to learn from and collaborate with representatives of Jeffco’s Indigenous Tribes.

“A History of Special Education in Jefferson County” Program, presented by Kelly Cvanciger

Uncovering a checkered past, Kelly Cvanciger details the storied history of special education in Jefferson County, from 1910 through 2020. Focusing on elevating and increasing awareness of our marginalized children, the journey begins in 1910 with the notorious history of the Ridge and evolves through school consolidation as Jefferson County R-1 emerged in 1950. Tying federal legislative mandates to education, Jeffco's journey from isolation to acceptance of children with developmental disabilities affords viewers an opportunity to gain insight related to the field of special education. 

Kelly Cvanciger is an educator at Bear Creek High School where she has taught in the social studies department for 20 years. Outside of the school day, Kelly serves as a Jefferson County Historical Commissioner, City of Lakewood Historical Commissioner, National History Day Board member, and Jeffco Schools ASD Strategic Committee member. A proud mom of a 9-year-old little boy and wife to an Iraq-Afghanistan War Veteran, Kelly spends her free time advocating for ASD awareness in the community. while continuing her pursuit to uncover Jefferson County's history. 

“Education and Preservation in Jefferson County” Program, presented by John Steinle

Combining the history of education and preservation in Jefferson County, this program traces the development of education through the one-room 1877 Buffalo Park School in Evergreen through the Morrison School, the 1920s Conifer Junction School, and Bear Creek High School, illustrating all the phases of education from one-room school to sprawling modern education complex. The program also describes why the early schools have been preserved and which organization or individual saved them.

John Steinle, a member of the Jefferson County Historical Commission, served as Director at several Ohio museums before emigrating to Colorado in 1992.  In 1994, Steinle became the Administrator of the Hiwan Homestead Museum in Evergreen, Colorado, working for Jefferson County Open Space. He was promoted to History Education Supervisor and Region Supervisor for the Bear Creek Region. He retired in 2016. Steinle is the author of several books, including Colorado and the Silver Crash: The Panic of 1893.  

Colorado Arts and Crafts Society’s “Gathering of the Guilds” Program, presented by Cynthia Shaw

Since its establishment as a volunteer non-profit organization in 1997, the Colorado Arts and Crafts Society (CACS) continues to honor and promote the aesthetic and philosophical legacy of the original Arts and Crafts Movement (c. 1880-1920) in the Rocky Mountain region and beyond.  One of CACS' most popular events is its "Gathering of the Guilds", an annual show, sale and symposium featuring local artisans exhibiting and selling their works evocative of this fascinating period in the history of design.

Cynthia Shaw has an undergraduate degree in creative writing and journalism. After working as an editor and feature writer for the Sarasota Herald Tribune in Florida and as assistant editor at Yankee Press in Boston, she obtained a master's in architectural history and preservation from the University of Virginia.  In 1986 she moved to Colorado, where she worked for Historic Boulder, Zimmerman-Hand  Architects and Communication Arts.  Joining the staff of the Boettcher Mansion in 1995, she served as its Director from 2000-18.  A member of the Jefferson County Historical Commission (JCHC) since 2010, she has held the positions of Chair,  Vice Chair, Education and Events Committee Co-Chair and Nominating Committee Chair.  She also regularly contributes to the commission’s Historically Jeffco magazine.

Jefferson County Historical Commission is a volunteer commission appointed by the Board of County Commissioners  and tasked with encouraging stewardship of Jefferson County history. It does this through assisting County government, historical societies and museums, and property owners in preservation efforts, and disseminating information about County history. The Commission publishes an annual magazine, Historically Jeffco. For more information, visit our website or contact the Jefferson County Historical Commission.  

2020 Historically Jeffco Magazine Now Available

The Jefferson County Historical Commission (JCHC) invites readers to pick up a fresh copy of its annual publication, Historically Jeffco magazine. Following the theme of Legacy Trades and Businesses, the 2020 edition highlights numerous local commercial enterprises that have thrived through generations. Also featured in the 72-page publication are special anniversaries such as Prohibition and Women’s Suffrage, spotlights on Coors and Lockheed Martin, and much more!

How to Get Your Copy of Historically Jeffco

As always, all issues of Historically Jeffco are available for free download on our Historical Publications page. A limited number of hard copies of the 2020 edition of Historically Jeffco are available at the Planning & Zoning Division office (100 Jefferson County Pkwy, Suite 3550, in the Jefferson County Courthouse).

Past issues of the magazine in hard copy format may be purchased through the Friends of the JCHC with proceeds going to fund JCHC programs and events. For details, please contact us.

Celebrate Our History!

Brighten your spirits this year with Jefferson County Historical Commission’s Hall of Fame celebration! Each year, the Commission brings new members into its Hall of Fame, honoring those individuals, living and dead, who contributed to Jefferson County’s vibrant history and to continuing its legacy into the future.

In 2020 COVID restrictions prevented the Commission from holding its usual in-person awards ceremony. Instead, a virtual program was created and posted on the Commission’s YouTube channel. The program was hosted by the Commission’s Chair, Lee Katherine Goldstein, and was held in the ruins of the historic 1859 Bradford-Perley House at Ken-Caryl Ranch.

2020’s inductees into the Jefferson County Hall of Fame were:

Katherine Craig, (1862-1934) noted educator and crusader for women’s rights. Craig, who grew up on Lookout Mountain, was passionately involved in education, becoming the state’s Superintendent of Public Education from 1904 to 1908. While serving in that office, she painstakingly surveyed and listed all modifications to Colorado’s education laws, an invaluable service to all succeeding educators. 

Linda Kirkpatrick, organizer, fundraiser, and supporter of Evergreen-area non-profit organizations such as Mountain Area Land Trust, Evergreen Parks and Recreation, Mount Evans Hospice, Leadership Evergreen, and many others. Kirkpatrick edited a newspaper, Upbeat, publicizing activities of local non-profits, and followed that with a webzine, JustAroundHere, also supporting schools and non-profit groups from the area. 

In addition, the Commission presented its annual Meyer Award for historic preservation to the Ken-Caryl Ranch Historical Society for its efforts in preserving and commemorating the archaeological and historic sites located within the Ken-Caryl Ranch properties. Through its outstanding work, no less than five properties have been added to the National register of Historic Places, including the Bradford-Perley House, John C. Shaffer Barn, Ken-Caryl-South Valley Archaeological District, and archaeology sites Bradford House II and III. 

The Hall of Fame celebration is available for viewing on the Jefferson County Historical Commission’s YouTube channel, which can be accessed here.external_site_marker

The Jefferson County Historical Commission members are appointed by the Board of Jefferson County Commissioner and represent all areas of the County. The members are assisted by staff members from Planning and Zoning and County Archives. Its mission is to promote and foster historic preservation, educate others about Jefferson County history, and honor those who value and enhance the County’s history. For more information visit the Historical Commission’s Facebook pageexternal_site_marker Opens in new window, Jefferson County CO Historical Commission. You may also contact the JCHC Chair with any questions.

Historically Jeffco Magazine Highlights County’s Rich History

Jefferson County’s history is rich, diverse and significant. And for nearly 45 years, the Jefferson County Historical Commission (JCHC) has worked to ensure that everyone can learn about the places and people that have made it so.

“Part of the mission of the JCHC,” said Commission Chair Lee Katherine Goldstein, “is to convey our County’s history and help preserve the special places and stories that allow us to better understand ourselves and this place we call home.”

One way the JCHC achieves this goal is through its annual publication, Historically Jeffco magazine.

Every year, history buffs, local citizens and folks who are just plain curious about our County’s history look forward to the coming issue of Historically Jeffco magazine.

In fact, the magazine is so highly regarded that the 2018 issue won three National Association of County Information Officers (NACIO) awards, including Best in Show (out of 235 submissions). The NACIO Awards of Excellence recognize the great work being done by county communications professionals across the country. The 64-page, full-color publication was a combined effort of the Jefferson County Historical Commission and Jeffco employees Ronda Frazier (Editor) and the late Doyle Harrison (Design & Layout).

Past issues of Historically Jeffco may be purchased through the Friends of the JCHC with proceeds going to fund JCHC programs and events, and are also available for free download at on our Historical Publications page. For details, contact the contact the JCHC Chairperson.