There is a neighborhood in Denver with a history so rich you can feel it as you walk through its streets. This neighborhood is known affectionately as "Five Points," a name derived from Denver's old tramway company, which used the nickname because their street car signs were not big enough to list all of the street names at this end-of-the-line stop. Today, Five Points encapsulates the busy retail, restaurant and services corridor on Welton Street. Five Points was founded in the 1860s as one of Denver's first residential suburbs and it features some of Denver's oldest homes and historic storefronts. Brimming with history and pride, its commercial district was a requisite stop for the world's premier African American jazz musicians--including Charlie Parker, Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, and countless others--who stopped in Denver on their way between midwest and west coast tours to play in Five Points' clubs and performance halls. Many of them stayed at the historic Rossonian Hotel, which still stands today. Music and celebration are still alive in the neighborhood including Five Points' Juneteenth celebration--an annual parade and festival commemorating the day in 1865 when African Americans in Texas first heard word of the Emancipation Proclamation. This is one of the biggest such festivals in America, attracting upwards of 120,000 people over four days each year. As Welton Street runs along Five Points, you'll find the bustle and hum of 75 businesses, including restaurants, cafes, boutiques, barber shops, salons, a bank and a radio station. What you'll also find is that Welton Street is the only predominantly African American owned commercial strip in the country. From its jazz roots to this proud stretch of merchants, Five Points has made its mark on the history books and in the hearts of its residents.
Some of the oldest and most beautiful Victorian homes make up block after block of this historic neighborhood. In addition, a remarkable rebirth is taking place throughout the community with new housing developments popping up in Five Points, including luxury lofts at 29th and Downing and 26th and Washington.
Black American West Museum
The Black American West Museum & Heritage Center tells the forgotten story of the African American pioneers who helped to shape the West. This small museum is housed in the former home of Dr. Justina Ford, Colorado\'s first African American female doctor.
Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library
The Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library was the brainchild of Denver\'s first African American mayor Wellington Webb and his wife Wilma Webb who felt that the history of African Americans in Denver and the American west was underrepresented. The library was designated the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library in honor of Omar Blair, the first black president of the Denver school board, and Elvin Caldwell, the first black City Council member.
Stiles African American Heritage Center
This center was created to teach African American history, and encourage young people to go forward with dignity and pride. It’s mission is to help all people become aware of the significant contributions African Americans have made toward the development and progress of America.
Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble Studio
Cleo Parker Robinson Dance began in 1970. Founded with the belief that the language of dance transcends the boundaries of culture, class and age, this institution is committed to bringing dance into the lives of many diverse people. CPRD is composed of a professional modern dance ensemble, year-round dance school, three-hundred seat theatre, in-school lecture demonstration series, international summer dance institute and outreach program for at-risk youth.