Monday, April 21, 2014

Is Louisville, Colorado, One of the Best Places to Live?







My husband and I took a drive out to the Boulder County area of Colorado last weekend. We had heard about the town of Louisville from magazine articles that often name it as one of the best places to live, and were curious to see why. The drive north was certainly beautiful, as we had some magnificent views of the high snow capped Rockies, lying beyond the foothills, along the way. ( All photos will enlarge, for easier viewing of details, if clicked on)


The Flatiron Mountains, that we passed by in the town of Boulder, were instantly recognizable to us, as our son had attended the University of Colorado in Boulder for his Master degree in Boulder. You can see why he fell in love with this area of the country and decided to settle here after his graduation.


We soon arrived in Louisville and turned onto its Main Street. The city of Louisville was incorporated in 1882 and lies in Boulder County, six miles east for the city of Boulder and twenty five miles northwest of Denver.  It's population is around 18,000 people.


The Miner Memorial statue in front of city hall on Main Street represents the past coal miners of Louisville, many of whom were immigrants of both Northern and Southern European countries, who built the town. In August 1877, the Welch Mine opened--the first of many coal mines to come. The Acme Mine operated directly beneath the original town of Louisville from 1890 to 1928 and produced nearly two million tons of coal. In all, thirty mines were located in and around the town, and locals did not have to travel far for work. After WW2 the demand for coal diminished and the mines closed in 1952, but by then Louisville had become a thriving suburb of Boulder and Denver.

The mining history in Colorado is not without it tales of strife and hardship and this year marks the 100 year anniversary of the Ludlow Mine Strike and Massacre and the Northern Field Mine Strikes, which included the Louisville mines. As both of my grandfathers were coal miners in Pennsylvania, I hold great sympathy and respect for the sacrifices these Colorado man made to improve work conditions and safety in the mines, and to earn a living wage.




The Louisville Historical Museum was located on 10001 Main Street. It was  originally constructed in 1904 as a general store. 


It features a variety of artifacts from the area and historic photographs


Next to the store is an original house that dates from the early coal mining era, and is now is set up to portray what a typical miner's home looked like......


...and its rooms were filled with period furniture and artifacts.



Some of the shops and restaurants we saw on Main Street in Louisville. Many are located in buildings that are original to the town from 100 years ago!



We stopped at the Blue Parrot Restaurant for lunch.  Click to enlarge the above photo and you can read its story on the menu's front page. For four generations the Colacci family has been serving customers at this location since 1919. They call their food "Grandma Style" Italian. 


The houses around the historic center of town are in a variety of cottage, craftsman and colonial styles.....


...while the homes further from the historic center were larger and on more property.



Some homes were well into the million dollar, and up, range.



Louisville is considered by many as a good place to live and raise a family for many factors--crime rate is very low, the schools are well respected, and its location near the technology rich Boulder and Denver corridor has kept job options and the housing market solid. It is also surrounded by over 1,700 acres of open space, with recreation opportunities in the Rocky Mountains only twenty minutes away, plus Colorado has sunshine 300 days of the year! It certainly was a nice community. We enjoyed our visit to Louisville and will visit again in the future.

I'm sure every town considers its area the best place to live.  I enjoyed all the years I lived in Brooklyn, New York, and I now feel the same way about where I live in Littleton, Colorado. How do you feel about your home town? What do you love the most about it?


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37 comments:

Penny @ The Comforts of Home said...

It looks like a lovely town. I live in Hendersonville NC and it is a charming mountain town, with a curvy main street. It has lovely shops, good restaurants and it is near Asheville NC which is very funky and artsy.

Old Kitty said...

The houses are amazing - but the original house still standing as a homage to a miner's family is the most beautiful in its understatement and rich history! Louisville certainly looks lovely and its reputation seems well deserved! Such stunning views! Kudos to Louisville for continuing to prosper despite the mine closures!

Take care
x

Betsy Adams said...

ANYWHERE in Colorado that you live would be AWESOME I'm sure---especially with the view of the Rockies in the background... Wow!!!!

I love where we live since we have the best of all seasons here --and since we are central to so many other areas of the country.. I also LOVE the Smokies -which are close. SO---I am HAPPY.

Hugs,
Betsy

black eyed susans kitchen said...

Beautiful post Pat, and so very different from the east coast. I love the mountain view!

ellen b. said...

What a great town to ramble through. I'm content in my town...

Grace said...

what a cute little town. looks like it is safe and happy! Grace xoox

Mersad said...

It's an amazing town, made even more beautiful by your lovely images. I really had a great time reading and exploring. The museum look so cute from the outside, and displays a lot of interesting subjects. And I also love the various houses, as well as the street scenes. Wonderful!

Mersad
Mersad Donko Photography

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

It's a beautiful town and just the right size. I've lived in a few different places and now love Florida! We're so close to things we love to do. I've always thought you should find out what you can do for fun where ever you live. Make the most of it...like you do! Sweet hugs, Diane

Sam Hoffer @ My Carolina Kitchen said...

What a lovely town and just the right size with 18,000 people. I can't get over some of those buildings that are a hundred years old. How cool is that. It is indeed a lovely part of the world.
Sam

Neesie said...

Thanks for taking me on a fantastic trip and I didn't have to pack a bag or leave my sofa ;D
I love historic buildings and you have shown so many great examples.
Thanks for sharing xoxo

eileeninmd said...

Pat, it is a beautiful place to live. I would love the mountain scenery! It is gorgeous.. Enjoy your new week!

Lynn@Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Lovin' that great pot bellied stove Pat! Looks like a cute little town:@)

podso said...

IT looks like a nice place to live. I know Colorado is known in general as a good place to raise a family and lots of outdoor activities. I enjoy the tour, thanks Pat!

The Gathering Place said...

Louisville, Colorado certainly looks like a charming small town. It has charming houses and buildings and some fun historical sites. Looks like a fun place to live or visit!

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

It definitely looks like a lovely place to visit...and maybe to live, as well! Though I am quite content with where I live...I never tire of being a tourist in someone else's favorite town.

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Louisville looks like a lovely town and place to live. In fact, the more I see of your wonderful photos, the more I think many towns in Colorado would be a great place to live. I've been to Colorado a few times and thought it was a beautiful state. We love our home, but sometimes we think we should move and have less to take care of when he retires. It's hard to know what to do. Great post!

ladyfi said...

What a charming town!

Fun60 said...

I love reading posts about parts of the world that are so different to where i live. I could never imagine living anywhere else than London. I love its history, culture, parks and the fact that I will always find something of interest walking its streets.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Oh my....it's like old home week!! I grew up so near this area. Lived there for over 40 years.

That first photo of the snow on the Colorado Rockies....::::sigh:::: You've made me a bit nostalgic here today.

gracie1961 said...

While I really enjoyed my visit to Boston and NYC I have the feeling that I missed something not visiting little town like this one. I think that the real "America" is there....

AdriBarr said...

What a wonderful town, and you are one heck of a tour guide. I am loving getting to know your new home state!

Tanya Breese said...

it looks like a cute little town!

Vee said...

Both grandfathers were coal miners? How interesting! Though I love my hometown, I can not commend it as a wonderful place to live. The weather is atrocious, the mosquitoes are horrendous, and the people are unfriendly. I've been here since I was four years old and I am still "from away."

A View From A Brown Dog said...

It sure looks like a charming little town. I love my town. I love the space, weather (mostly) and artistry it has.

Betty said...

Did your husband think the Blue Parrot had good Italian food? I wonder why they named it the Blue Parrot? So many pretty old houses and stores. I'd love it there!

I've always said that Texas isn't home...it's a temporary stopping off point on my journey through life. I had always hoped we could move back to Virginia Beach where we loved living, but it was never possible. I wouldn't mind living back in NJ either, but it's so expensive. I'm here to stay. Getting too old to move again. I'd really like Houston if it wasn't for the climate. It's a nice city with a lot to offer, but the heat and humidity get old.

RNSANE said...

Looks like a delightful small town, close enough to the big city for what that has to offer but without the headaches of living in a big city.

For the past 35 years, I've lived in the San Francisco area which I have absolutely loved. Having to adjust to a retirement income makes that impossible. Sacramento is not as great...I miss my hills and night life - Sacramento has a rather small town feel. Of course, I've been spending much of the past two years in India.

La Petite Gallery said...

great post as always. Very interesting Pat. I love the Maine MidCoast area. The fishing villages and sound of fog horns, the sea mist. Snow I don't mind, but this winter was the worst I have ever seen. My favorite time is the Fall.
Thanks for the post.
yvonne

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

It does look like a nice place to live.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

That does indeed look like a great place to live, and you make an appealing case, but I love living in Princeton, NJ, where there's always something going on any day or night of the week. Plus it's shouting distance of both NYC and Philly.

Bonnie said...

Great scenery and stroll through town. I like the museum and typical miner's home. To think of washing your clothes with a scrub board and baking a cake or biscuits in a wood burning stove is quite humbling.

There is a lot to be said for a small town. Louisville has a lot going for it with good schools, low crime rate ,job options and good housing market.

I enjoyed getting acquainted with it. Thanks, Pat!

Cathy said...

What a fun day trip! I never visited Louisville but Boulder is one of the most beautiful places and the history of the area is fascinating. Thanks for taking us along, Pat.

Lori J said...

I love returning to simple times! Really enjoyed your photos. We are heading out to Colorado Springs to see my daughter for the first time and may have to head up further to see this interesting area! thanks for sharing.

Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes said...

Hi Pat, beautiful homes, especially smaller ones, they have lots more character the big ones! Loved the tour through the museum and getting a glimpse into a coalminer's life.

Michele {Malaysian Meanders} said...

It's wonderful that Louisville was able to thrive even after its original core industry of mining closed down. It does look like a nice place to live. I bet those million dollar homes are nice inside. We'll soon be leaving Malaysia to move back to our home in Austin, Texas. Thank goodness I like Austin or else making the move would make me so sad.

merrilymarylee said...

The older homes are charming--sort of a Lake Wobegon look to them. Funny that McMansions look pretty much the same in any area--sort of like Applebee's, Targets, Home Depots.

Nancy's Notes said...

Oh, I love Colorado! I think anywhere in the mountains would be ideal! Great shots!

Daniela said...

I'm so glad I've finally found a little of time and calm to take a tour among your last posts !!
In my opinion, there's no boubt, it is certainly one of the best places where live in and to be more precise I'd love to live in the typical home you've photographed, it's so lovely and cozy as all those little cottages of the following pictures !
I've learned just a little about Louisville when I prepared the post about Margaret Brown and her life and I was certain it's still nowadays a wonderful place..
Thank you my dear Pat,
Hugs xox
Dany