LaRed Latina of the Intermountain Southwest.

Denver Regional History:

Centuries before the first Spanish Explorers arrived in the Denver Region, the "High Plains" of Colorado were the home of the Sioux, Cheyenne, Arapahoe, Apache, Ute, Crow and Anasazi Indian Tribes.

After arriving to the "Rocky Mountains" area, Spanish Explorers named it Colorado (red), due to the "Reddish" color of the terrain.

In 1821, after two decades of political struggles, Mexico heroically won its independance from Spain. At the time, the state of Colorado as well as the whole Southwestern United States became part of the Mexican empire.

During this period Mexico encouraged commerce and welcomed immigrants from the United States. Hence, a large influx of American traders, businessmen, farmers, and families who came from as far as away as New York, and New England to settle in Colorado. While some of thedecided to remain in Colorado, others continued on to New Mexico, Utah, and California.

As a result of the war between the United States and Mexico in 1848, and the Gadsden Purchase of 1854, Mexico lost half its territory which included the current states of New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Utah, California and even parts of Kansas.

There is even today great controversy and debate as to the questionable, and perhaps unethical political means, the United States used to acquire this vast territory from Mexico. This issue was best addressed by Ulysses S. Grant when he said,

"I do not think there was ever a more wicked war than that waged by the U.S. on Mexico."

A few Spanish land grants still survive today , and Hispanic land grant heirs still argue the United States should be forced to honor land rights they were promised in the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, which ended the Mexican War. (See a copy of the original Treaty.)

In 1858, gold was discovered in the waters of Cherry Creek and the South Platte River. The "Pike's Pike" gold rush that ensued transformed the little mining camp of Cherry Creek into a monumental "Boom Town."

In 1861, the city was named after James W. Denver, Governor of the then Kansas Territory. With the Discovery of more gold and silver in the mountains, Denver experienced another period of prosperity, rapid growth and expansion. During this time, because of its beautiful tree lined boulevards, elegant theaters, and Victorian Mansions, Denver became known as the "Queen City of the Plains."

After the railroad arrived in the1870s, the city of Denver became the commercial, industrial, trade, cultural and transportation hub of the Rocky Mountain region.

In 1876, Colorado was admitted into the Union, and thus, officially became a bonafide part of the United States of America.

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