History Colorado Gets Back in the Saddle Tuesday With "Who Knew!?"

Hermann Heiser saddle.
Hermann Heiser saddle.

Yeehaw! The National Western Stock Show rides into Denver this week, and History Colorado is back in the saddle, too.

When the stunning History Colorado Center was unveiled three years ago, visitors marveled at the architecture, the atrium floor inlaid with a map of Colorado that told stories about the state, the cool technology. But history fans had one big question: Where's all the stuff?

History Colorado — which got its start as the Colorado Historical Society in 1879— had accumulated millions of items over the years, many of which were on display in the old museum. Those collections went into storage when that facility closed in anticipation of the move to a new building just down the street — but few were included in the exhibits unveiled in April 2012, when the History Colorado Center opened. But last November, to give the public a hint of the "extraordinary, unexpected and infamous past of our state," the facility kicked off the "Who Knew!? Everything Old Is New Again" series, featuring items from the collection.

In the final installment of the series, History Colorado will be unveiling several stock-show artifacts from its vast collection, including a Hermann Heiser saddle and chaps and a unique styled horn chair. Hermann H. Heiser, a German immigrant, was a renowned leather worker who established the largest saddlery-goods manufacturing company in the West, located in the 1500 block of Blake Street. Paul Andrews, president of the NWSS, will introduce the items at 1:15 p.m. Tuesday, January 5, at the History Colorado Center, 1200 Broadway, where they'll remain on display through January 24 along with all other "Who Knew!?" offerings, including Alfred Packer's gun and famous Colorado dresses.

Alfred Packer's gun.
Alfred Packer's gun.

In honor of the unveiling, Cafe Rendezvous, the restaurant in the center, will be offering a Stock Show Burger with Green Chili Sauce and Onion Rings on Tuesday.

For more information, visit HistoryColorado.org or call 303-HISTORY.

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