Colorado Springs Sesquicentennial: 150 years under America's Mountain

July 31, 2021 marks the 150-year anniversary of the founding of Colorado Springs by William Jackson Palmer. The city, founded at the base of Pikes Peak, experienced many changes over the last 150 years as it has grown to the 39th largest city in the United States.

Sesquicentennial - noun
ses·​qui·​cen·​ten·​ni·​al | \ ˌse-skwi-sen-ˈte-nē-əl \
A 150th anniversary or its celebration.

Pikes Peak Library District (PPLD) and other community organizations are planning an extensive series of programming and events throughout the year. Many programs focus on providing a historic background to better understand our city today, both for people new to the community and for folks just starting to learn about the region’s history. Other programs are designed to critically examine and appraise the complexities of Colorado Springs’ past. The history of our city is important to all of us; there is something for everyone.



Check back for more programs and events as they are added.


CoS History Book Club

The past is the window to the present. Using the published works of local historians as inspiration, this program will highlight specific themes of Colorado Springs and the region. It is offered in concert with the books referenced, which provide additional background. However, attendees should not feel obligated to read the books in advance of the discussion. The series will provide high-quality information about the community to a broad and diverse audience.

Inspired by the Pikes Peak Library Districts’ Regional History Book Series book, Extraordinary Women of the Pikes Peak Region, the first program will introduce women important to Colorado Springs history.

Chris Nicholl, PPLD Regional History and Genealogy staff member, will share the story of three Colorado Springs women whose political demonstrations at the gates of the White House landed them in prison and helped win the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, granting American women the right to vote. Susan Fletcher, Glen Eyrie Navigators Historian and Archivist, will explore the lives of Queen Palmer, wife of General William Jackson Palmer, and their three daughters, Elsie, Dorothy, and Marjory.

For more information about women of the Pikes Peak Region, Extraordinary Women of the Pikes Peak Region highlights these stories as well as the stories of 18 other women. The book can be checked out physically at the Library, downloaded from our online Catalog, or listened to on the Libby app.