The Colorful History Behind The Colorado Welcome Sign
Welcome to Colorful Colorado. That's the sign that's been greeting people as they cross the state line since the signs were first created back in 1950.
I've always found it amusing that the sign and the message itself never really jived with each other because neither the sign nor the area where the sign was located (at least in the places where I've ever crossed the state line) was very colorful.
Colorful or not, the sign has become iconic for both Coloradans and visitors alike as it appears on shirts, hats, stickers, keychains, cups and more.
Lisa Schoch, Senior Historian for the Colorado Department of Transportation recently told 9 News:
"They're very representative of a period in our state's history, it was before we kind of politically became more important on the map. We were kind of just one of those rural western states, so [the sign] kind of represents that searching for identity and trying to establish identity as a state."
The very first sign was erected down in Southern Colorado on the New Mexico border at Raton Pass.
The signs that you see now and that have become so iconic were almost changed to a more "colorful" rendition in the late 80's and actually started to go up in the early 90's but as nice as they looked, there was a major uproar and that plan was scrapped as officials went back to the original.
Here's what it looked like:
So here we are, about 30 years later with the same signs and there is no plan of changing it anytime soon.
Here is a version of the sign that someone custom made for an individual for their personal use, what do you think?
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