Denver's Five Points: The Harlem of the West

A look at the Harlem of the West. Denver's Five Points

Five Points Cultural Historic District Photo Tour


2. With funding from the State Historical Fund, twenty interpretive markers are located throughout the district to acknowledge the neighborhood’s significance.

3. Completed in 1905, the Alta Cousins Terrace provided affordable housing to black residents arriving to town during the Great Migration. In 2011, the building was rehabilitated.

4. Colorado’s only all-black financial institution, Equity Savings and Loan, was established in this building in 1957.

5. Located at the intersection of 26th and Welton streets, the Maxwell and Lawson Drug drugstore opened in 1924.

6. Established by H.W. Ross in 1929, the Rossonian Hotel is where jazz greats like Louis Armstrong and Count Basie would stay and perform along Welton Street.

7. In business for more than 50 years, Atlas Drug was the only white-owned drugstore on Welton Street that welcomed African-Americans.

8. The Roxy Theater opened as a one screen, 568 seat black theater in 1934.

9. The Douglass Undertaking Company building is located to the right of the two-story building in the photograph. Dating back to 1892, this building was redesigned in 1915 for the Douglass Undertaking Company. The company was rumored to be founded by the son of abolitionist Frederick Douglass, L.H. Douglass.

10. The 40,000 square foot library Blair Caldwell African American Research Library is a full-service branch of the Denver Public Library that opened on Welton Street in 2003.

11. The Deep Rock Water Company was established in 1896 and is one of the longest operating businesses on Welton Street.

12. 2801 Welton Street was the location of Rice’s Tap Room and Oven-Simpson Hotel, a popular jazz venue with a hotel above (left). Opening in 1994, the RTD’s first 5.3-mile light rail line connected Five Points with downtown Denver (right).

13. Polaris at Ebert Elementary School on the corner of Park Avenue West and Glenarm Place.



Article by Ennis Davis, AICP. Contact Ennis at