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Peck House

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1860s. 83 Sunny Ave. (NR)
  • Peck House (Tom Noel)

James Peck arrived in Empire in 1862, struck it rich with the Pay Dirt Mine, and built the home now celebrated as Colorado's oldest operating inn. The two-story clapboard hotel with its full-length front veranda overlooks the town of Empire from a splendid hillside site. The original four-room house (now the reception, bar, and kitchen area) is a front-gabled structure on the west side of the current hotel. The large, two-story, side-gabled addition (c. 1881) contains twelve bedrooms and a downstairs billiard room, library, office, and women's lounge. The west wing addition (c. 1958) houses a new kitchen and dining room.

The hotel, opened in the 1860s, became a stage stop on the Georgetown–Middle Park run over Berthoud Pass. During the quiet decades for mining, it became a boarding-house that was often vacant. In 1958 Louise C. Harrison and Margaret Collbran reopened it as a hotel, bar, and restaurant after installing central heating and plumbing and carrying out an extensive restoration and refurnishing. Harrison, the grand-daughter of brewer Adolph Coors, tells the story in her book, Empire and the Berthoud Pass (1964).

Writing Credits

Thomas J. Noel


What's Nearby


Thomas J. Noel, "Peck House", [Idaho Springs, Colorado], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

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