Take a Short Walk to a Former Colorado Family’s 1800s Homestead
There are several structures throughout Colorado that date all the way back to the 1800s and are still standing to this day. These preserved spots provide a peek at the Centennial State's historical past.
One of these sites can be found inside Castlewood Canyon State Park. Located here, are the remains of a historic homestead, that was built more than 120 years ago.
The Lucas Homestead was constructed using concrete in 1898. Although this was an unusual choice of material for a residential home, it was clearly built to withstand the times.
A hundred and twenty-eight years ago, Irish immigrants Margaret and Patrick Lucas paid just $10 for a 160-acre homestead in Franktown, Colorado. They were among some of the first homesteaders to settle in the area, starting with just a wooden house, before building the second structure. The couple lived in their concrete home for approximately 50 years, raising a family of eight children there.
The two-story home had walls that stood six feet tall. Leftover bolts at the top of the walls suggest that the roof was nailed on at one point in time. Although not much remains of the residence, it's hard to imagine a family of ten people living comfortably inside such a tiny space.
The Lucases built several other structures on their land, some of which, in addition to the dwelling's skeleton, can be found within the park. For example, the Lucas family raised milk cows and an old livestock chute with barbed wire attached still sits nearby the house. Their old spring house, which they used as a refrigerator, is also present.
Patrick Lucas died in the house in 1936. Margaret continued to reside there until she moved to Denver in 1941 and the concrete abode was never lived in again. A fire blazed through the property in the late 1950s/early 1960s.
To visit the Lucas Homestead, it's best to enter the park from the west side. The house will be located on the left side of the main dirt road, not too far past the self-service pay station. There's a parking lot just a short distance from the ruins and an easy 0.35-mile trail that leads to the remains.