Pressing the Flesh

Hope it's not too touchy-feely.

While the debate continues over what to do with the Lace House, a circa 1863 structure that is one of the West's prime examples of Carpenter Gothic architecture, the solution is staring everyone in the face.

Literally, if you're in Black Hawk.
Leave the Lace House exactly where it is, exactly how it is.
Which at the moment is this: Stranded. Preservationists keep wringing their hands over the sorry state of the historic structure, a situation that they could have easily predicted six years ago if they'd bothered to look at how the town of Black Hawk was perverting the original intent of the ballot measure that legalized so-called limited gaming back in 1991. That vote, you may recall, was sold as a way to not only fund historic preservation around the state, but to keep alive the three mountain towns that would host gambling. Black Hawk wanted the business in the worst way--and that's exactly how the town's getting it.

Exhibit Z in a continuing series: The Canyon Casino, which is expanding, has already moved the Lace House's neighboring buildings in preparation for the establishment of a "historic" park right near the sewage-treatment plant ("Black Hawk's History? It's History," May 29, 1997). Now the casino's construction company is proceeding to scoop out all the land in front of the Lace House, carve out all the land at the sides of the Lace House, and actually move mountains from behind the Lace House.

And so today the Lace House, outhouse and all, stands on a precarious man-made mesa, surrounded by furious construction activity.

It stands as a monument to greed.
What could be more historically accurate?

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