Littleton Colorado history began with Richard Sullivan Little. He was one of the engineers hired to construct a system of ditches for water for farms and businesses for the new town of Denver.
Richard Little was taken with the area in which he was surveying and filed a home stake and other land claims. He brought his wife, Angeline, to the dry climate. By doing so, her asthmatic condition was greatly improved. They began to farm in the area with other settlers. Littleton Colorado history owes its life to Richard Little.
Littleton and several other neighbors built the rough and Ready Flour Mill in 1867. It is still in use today as a restaurant.
The Denver and Rio Grande Railroad came to the area in 1871 and growth began. In 1872, Richard Little filed a subdivision plat for much of his property to form the town of Littleton. By 1890, there were 245 residents who voted to incorporate the town. Until after WWII, Littleton’s principal industry was agriculture.
Arapahoe County was divided into Arapahoe, Denver, Adams, Washington and Yuma Counties. Littleton was temporarily named the county seat for Arapahoe County. It was granted permanent status in 1904, defeating its rival, Englewood.
Littleton residents wanted to preserve the past. There are a number of historic buildings still in use.
The Littleton Town Hall is the show piece of downtown Main Street. It was constructed in 1920 to replace the old building. Littleton resident, Jules Benedict, who designed the Carnegie Public Library at the end of Main Street in 1916, was commissioned to design the building. Town Hall is of an Italian Renaissance revival design. The pointed arches are Gothic Revival. It was a common practice of architects of the day to incorporate a number of different styles. Cast iron lamps were actually made by Benedict. He donated them to the city. The originals are still in the building. The building also housed the city jail and police department. Today it is the Town Hall Arts Center. Each year a variety of programs are presented.
For many years, the Arapahoe County Courthouse stood as a beacon on the hill. Now that the trees have grown up, it is not quite as visible. The building was built in the Mission Revival style. It was built to take advantage of the light by having a raised basement. It has a distinctive cupola with decorative finials. It is now being used by the City of Littleton as the Municipal Courthouse. An additional wing was added in 1948, but later removed when the building was restored to its original plan in 1998. During the restoration the original tiles entry floors revealed the 1908 Arapahoe County emblem. There are tin ceiling tiles on the second floor. Those, too, remain. It’s nice to have original pieces of Littleton Colorado history.
Be sure and visit the Littleton Musem on Gallup Street.
Check out Littleton Colorado Schools – Arapahoe County – Douglas County – Jefferson County
For more information about Littleton Colorado History, Littleton Colorado Real Estate or homes for sale along the Front Range, call Marilyn Van Steenberg, Dream Home Consultant, Certified Residential Specialist and Eco-Broker.
Specializing in Buyer Representation & Relocation Real Estate Transactions.