Delta, Colorado: History and Historical Significance

The Historical Significance of Delta, CO

The seat of western Colorado’s Delta County, Delta is a municipality rich in history and is full of beautiful hiking trails to try. Consider visiting this beautiful location on your next trip after discovering the historical significance of this region, plus some ideas of things to do in Delta, Colorado.

Trading Post Beginnings

Before European gold prospectors and settlers conquered what would become Delta, the Ute tribe of Indigenous people lived in present-day Utah and Colorado. In 1828, Antoine Robidoux constructed a fur trading post for the Ute people and early settlers.

Fort Uncompahgre was the first Anglo settlement in the area. The fort was located near the Uncompahgre River, and the city of Delta received its name from the river’s delta. In 1844, the fort was abandoned when conflicts broke out between Ute and Mexicans.

Today, travelers can visit a reconstruction of the trading post and learn about the Old Spanish Trail. The reconstruction features authentic trade goods, furs, and animal hides. There, you can learn more about how Ute and trappers exchanged furs, guns, knives, beads, and other items.

Historic Preservation

Delta was incorporated in 1882, and many of the town’s historically significant buildings are preserved. Listed on local and state historic registers, you can visit these buildings to glimpse the city’s past.

The Fairlamb House Bed and Breakfast, built in 1906, was constructed with brick from the Delta Brick and Tile Company. It was the first house in the region built by workers who were on an eight-hour workday.

The Egyptian Theatre opened in 1928 and has earned its place in the US National Register of Historic Places and the Colorado State Register of Historic Properties. The 425-seat theater features elements based on traditional designs of ancient Egypt and is part of the architectural style trend first popularized by Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood in 1922.

Pioneer History

The key to Delta, Colorado’s historical significance is its pioneer heritage. The Delta County Historical Museum features items from this critical era of the town’s history, as well as other periods. Visit the museum to see pioneer housewares, toys, clothing, and farm and ranch equipment.

In nearby towns of Delta County, you can see visit other interesting sites. In Paonia, visit the Bowie Schoolhouse and see students’ textbooks and desks. In Hotchkiss, the Hotchkiss-Crawford Museum features items from the late 1800s and early 1900s that were important to everyday life in this region.

While this town is full of historical treasures, Delta is also known as the Gateway to the Canyons—all the more reason to rent a Jeep and see all the beautiful sites. Explore the surrounding countryside in an off-road car rental from Diff.—book now to start your journey.


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