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Deer Trail Town

Arapahoe County, Colorado

Deer Trail Town Hall is located at 555 Second Avenue, Deer Trail, CO 80105.
Phone: 303‑769‑4464.


Beginnings [1]

Like many communities in the west, Deer Trail developed around a railroad station. In 1870, a station was built when the railroad tracks were laid. On November 11, 1875, the Kansas Pacific Railway granted and platted the land for the town of Deer Trail. Deer Trail became an important shipping point in eastern Colorado for livestock, and later grain, cream, eggs, and other products. On July 4, 1869, Deer Trail was home to the first rodeo. Many homes and businesses were built in Deer Trail prior to the turn of the century.

The Town incorporated in 1920. Deer Trail adopted a mayor and board of trustees type of government. S. Guy Morrow was the Town's first mayor. He was elected on April 6, 1920.

The 1920s also marked Deer Trail's most prosperous era. Many businesses opened including two banks, two lumber companies, two barber shops, three hotels, five markets and grocery stores, several cream stations, a drug store, fashion shop, theater, cafes, bakery, doctor and dentists offices, a real estate office, and grain elevators. The fairgrounds were built in the 1920's by a group of Deer Trail business men who formed a Fair Association. By September 23, 1920, the regulation half-mile track, large grandstand, and pavilion was built. In 1923 an artesian water well was drilled. In 1924 a water tower was constructed as well as the sewer system.

The 1930s were significant in Deer Trail's history because during the decade a highway through town was constructed. This road is known as State Highway 40, or 1st Avenue.

During the 1960s Interstate 70 was constructed. On June 17, 1965, Deer Trail suffered a tremendous flood. Sections of the railroad tracks and of highway 40 were washed downstream. The business district was under six feet of water. The Town never fully recovered. Many business owners chose not to rebuild, others moved to be closer to the 1-70 interchange, and other buildings had to be torn down.

In 1969, after nearly 100 years, the railroad discontinued service to the depot. The deed to the depot was given to the Deer Trail Pioneer Historical Society and in June, 1971, the structure was moved to the town park to be used as museum.

Deer Trail's population has remained fairly stable in recent years. However, the growth of the metropolitan area, particularly around Denver's International Airport, may create development pressure in Deer Trail in the coming years.

  1. Town of Deer Trail, Colorado, Deer Trail Comprehensive Plan, 2000, www.deertrailcolorado.org, accessed July, 2013.