Astor House (Colorado)
||This article relies entirely upon a single source, the National Register Information System (NRIS) database or one of its mirrors. Articles based solely on the NRIS may contain errors. (November 2013)|
Astor House Hotel
|Location||822 12th St, Golden, Colorado|
|Architectural style||Georgian (modified)|
|Governing body||City of Golden|
|NRHP Reference #||73000478|
|Added to NRHP||March 1, 1973|
The Astor House is a historic stone hotel from the earliest years of Golden, Colorado. Associated with prominent area pioneers, it was also a pioneering effort in historic preservation in the region. Today it is a museum open to the public, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Astor House was originally built in 1867 by Seth Lake, a pioneer hotelkeeper who came to the area in the early 1860s. An upgrade from his original Lake House hotel on the site, it was carved of sandstone quarried by Charles R. Foreman & Co. at the far west end of 12th Street which the hotel stands on. The premier hostelry of Golden, it served patrons from miners to Territorial legislators who met nearby. It was Golden's only known hotel not to have served alcohol, as the devout Baptist owner was a temperance man who would not allow it on his premises. Later the hotel was owned by German immigrant Ida Goetze. It gradually faded from hotel to boarding house, and was altered by four fires and repaired to its present appearance.
In 1971 the property was acquired by the Golden Downtown Improvement District to be destroyed for a parking lot, a fate befalling a number of Golden's landmarks including the church Lake had faithfully served. City Councilor Ruben Hartmeister raised concern about whether a place of its history should be preserved. Standing alone he was not initially listened to, but Golden's modern historic preservation movement was born. Citizens rallied to the aid of the Astor House and formed the Golden Landmarks Association to try to save it. On June 13, 1972 Golden's people voted to save it, with 69% voting in favor. Afterward it became the Astor House Hotel Museum, which is open to the general public today as a historic house museum. The museum depicts life in the hotel in the early 20th century.