Dec 16, 2019
A Denver doctor’s interest in creating a facility where patients could learn to heal themselves was the starting point for the collection of buildings that may become Denver’s next historic district. On Monday, Denver City Council will hold a hearing and vote on the proposed designation of the Tilden School for Teaching Health Historic District, a small campus of three buildings overlooking Highland Park, which date back more than 100 years.
Dr. John Henry Tilden, an early practitioner of holistic medicine, founded the Tilden School in 1916 to advance his theories on health, diet, and medical treatments that avoided drugs and surgery. The Tilden School was among many sanitoriums and health facilities emerging in Denver during this era, as doctors from across the country recognized the benefits of Colorado’s climate and altitude. The Bosler House, a Denver landmark designated individually in 1984, served as the headquarters, flanked by the primary facility next door at 3249 W. Fairview Place and an apartment building for patients on the other side at 3279 Grove Street. All three buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
“These buildings tell a story about Denver and the people who came to our city seeking good health,” said Laura Aldrete, executive director of Community Planning and Development. “By preserving them, we are not only protecting their architectural significance, but also keeping these interesting stories alive.”
If designated, the Tilden School for Teaching Health Historic District would be the second historic district approved by City Council this year and would become Denver’s 56th overall. Council has also designated four individual landmarks in 2019, bringing Denver’s total to 347. The application for the district was submitted by former District 1 City Councilman Rafael Espinoza with the consent of the owners of the Bosler House, the building on Grove Street and the association of homeowners for the building at Fairview Place.
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