Denver's Best Kept Secret

For years, people drove past the former Power House for the downtown trolley line that had huge signs on the interstate highway that proclaimed the presence of the Forney Transportation Museum. There it stood from the mid-1960's to the mid-1990's. Impossible to miss, being housed in such an imposing building and in such a high traffic area.

And yet, most Denver natives and most other residents will tell you that they have never visited, even if they know what it is. And this is what they've missed, some of which is gone forever. The museum is based on the personal collection of self made industrial Giant, J.D. Forney. Mr Forney's companies, based out of Ft. Collins, manufactured everything from instant soldering irons to airplanes, welders to printed goods. And his hobby, collecting cars and other modes transportation.

Rivaling the one time collection of Harrah's in Las Vegas, and being counted as one of the top five car collections in the country, this collection bears viewing, and often. Take your friends, it's something they most likely have never seen. Until they open their second gallery, some of the 650+ cars are displayed on a rotating basis. Others, like the dozen or more examples of the only one in existence are on permanent display. And their collection of railroad equipment, farm equipment, horse drawn vehicles, bicycles, and antique clothing is notable.

2006 is the 100th anniversary of the Kissel Motor Car Company, and the Forney has more Kissels in house than any other collection. Of course, it should, as the first car that J.D. Forney bought to collect was a Kissel, and they also own perhaps the most famous Kissel of all, Amelia Earhart's 'Gold-bug'. Both are on display, along with a Hispano-Suissa.

One thing to be missed is the old guy, J.D. Forney, who used to hang around to answer questions while visitors view the collection. He is missed. But, his spirit lives on (sort of) in the museum staff. If JD didn't know something about a car, he made up something interesting to put on the signs. The current research staff is far more careful, and all the signage, is far more factual.

Bottom line, if you are in Denver, and you have 2 or three hours to spend on relaxation, reminiscence, education and entertainment, the Forney Transportation Museum is a must see. And, don't miss their Burmashave poetry, prominently displayed.

It can be found at 4303 Brighton Boulevard, which is near the Denver Coliseum. If you don't have transportation, get a 48 bus from  downtown and get off at the Coliseum.