Western History & Genealogy Blog


Dalies Frantz: Denver’s Titan of the Keyboard

Concert program, Denver, February 10, 1936. WH305
Article on Frantz, Sunday Boston Globe Magazine, 1927. WH305
Frantz at Denver's Union Station with Ruth Ellen Dodds, circa 1922. WH305

Long before the days of American Idol, Denver boasted its own musical virtuoso, Dalies Frantz. 

1964 class photo poster found

1964 class photo poster

Happy 50th Reunion! 

Recently two researchers came to the Library to gather information for their upcoming Saint Luke's School of Nursing, 50th class reunion.

Found In The Archives: Baby Shoes for Hilda, 1898

Baby shoes, box, and note card, 1898. From May-D & F Records (C MSS WH222)
May Co., Denver, between 1900 and 1910. X-24124
Note card, 1898. From May-D & F Records (C MSS WH222)

Nearly ten years have passed since the May Company department store was sold and its name changed to Macy’s. Back in 1877, the May Company began in Leadville, Colorado.

A 1913 Hotel Review

Field & Farm Hotel Review 1913

How did anyone know what accommodations to book or avoid before the days of online hotel reviews? The newspaper! Read on for the sharing of one intrepid traveler's hilariously bad hotel experience in 1913. 

With summer here, many among us are scouring travel sites to seek out reviews of the best hotels.

Boldly Go Where Everyone Else Has Been Before

"We Will Ride" Plaque Colfax and Broadway

When I think about Independence Day, I normally think about the 4th of July with picnics, fireworks and parades. A few weeks ago, I met with members of ADAPT (American Disabled for Attendant Programs Today) and the Atlantis Community and they told me that this Saturday was the 36th anniversary of a important day in Denver history.

On July 5, 1978, Wade Blank and nineteen members of the Atlantis Community rolled their wheelchairs in front of two RTD Buses at the intersection of Colfax and Broadway chanting “We Will Ride” to p

Menu Collection Cuts the Mustard

Manhattan Restaurant's, 1633 Larimer St. (1946)
Little Pepinas Restaurant, 3400 Osage St.
Menu Collection Cuts the Mustard

What research value could a menu possibly have?

We've seen a lot of students in the library lately doing research on food or some variety of, shall we say, "gastro-history."  Thanks to our Archives volunteer, Joe, we've recently reorganized

155 Years Ago Today: The Rocky Mountain News’ First Issue

Portrait of William Newton Byers, between 1859 & 1863. Z-4887
View of the Rocky Mountain News and surrounding buildings, between 1860 & 1864. Z-1520
Copy of Rocky Mountain News Dated April 23, 1859, by Harry Mellon Rhoads. Rh-21

The first issue of the Rocky Mountain News was published April 23, 1859—mere days afte

Creative Types: Need Project Inspiration?

Thomas Moran, August 1915. By Henry Havelock Pierce. X-22164
How Long is Always, 1969. Watercolor by Jo Polseno. C75-7 ART
Dessert toast recipes from Toast and Its Various Uses: There's a Difference in Bread, 1924

You may love your neighborhood DPL branch, but it might be time to branch out!  

Did you know that DPL’s Central Library has a Western History/Genealogy Department on Level 5?

23 Years in the Making: Edward Curtis's The North American Indian

A Chief of the Desert - Navaho, circa 1907. By Edward S. Curtis. X-34027
Pima Baskets, circa 1907. By Edward S. Curtis. X-34043
A Heavy Load - Sioux, circa 1907. By Edward S. Curtis. X-34103

From 1907 to 1930, Edward Sheriff Curtis devoted his life to a project documenting the cultures of 80 North American Indian tribes living from the Great Plains to as far north as Alaska.

Wild Woman of the West: Author Helen Rich

Portrait of Helen Rich, ca. 1950. Helen Rich Papers, WH348
Rich and Turnbull cabin, Breckenridge, 1954. Helen Rich Papers, WH348
Belle Turnbull (left) and Helen Rich (right), 1942. Helen Rich Papers, WH348
Helen Rich at The Spring Begins book signing, 1958. Helen Rich Papers, WH348

The Helen Rich Papers (WH348) detail the fascinating life of a woman who started out as a childhood f