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“Impressive Information & Display s” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Black American West Museum

Black American West Museum
Ranked #94 of 247 things to do in Denver
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Attraction details
Owner description: A museum that explores the history of black cowboys, wranglers and ranchers in the American West.
Fort Collins, Colorado
Level Contributor
241 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 221 helpful votes
“Impressive Information & Display s”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 March 2014

The museum is located in a two-story house that was the home of Dr. Justina Ford, the first female African American OB/gynecologist and pediatrician licensed in Colorado. When Dr. Ford moved to Denver in 1902 and was denied hospital privileges, she opened a medical clinic in her home. This compassionate woman accepted patients of all races and ethnicities, delivering over 7000 babies during her long career. Her life story sets the tone for the museum with its many displays, photographs and artifacts that show successes and contributions of African American entrepreneurs, educators, cowpokes and entertainers in the US West. Historical preservationist Dr. Anthony Young took our group of eight on an informative and entertaining tour of the museum. You can learn important history here and come away with plenty to think about. Photography is not permitted inside the museum.

Visited February 2014
3 Thank Henry A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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23 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
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  • Any
English first
Portland, Maine
Level Contributor
29 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 November 2013

There are four facets to this small museum.

First, the building in which the museum is housed was the home and office of Dr. Justina Ford, the first female African-American physician in Colorado. (The building, which was scheduled to be demolished, was rescued at the eleventh hour and moved a short distance to its present location in the Five Points neighborhood of Denver.) There is narrative information about Dr. Ford and her practice, as well as artifacts from her practice.

Secondly, there is a collection of artifacts pertaining to Black Americans in the west, dating from the second half of the 19th century to the early 20th century. There is substantial information about many of these artifacts. For me, one of the disappointments of the museum, however, is that these artifacts are in isolation – the museum presently has no comprehensive narrative about the lives of Black Americans in the west in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

Thirdly, there are displays about Black entrepreneurship in the Five Points area, largely in the second quarter of the 20th century.

Finally, there is a very well done video about the community of Dearfield, Colorado. Dearfield was a Black community located near Denver that was established in the early 20th century, prospered briefly, but died during the Dust Bowl and Great Depression.

BAWM is not handicapped accessible, as far as I know (all of the 19th century artifacts are on the second floor of what originally was a modest private home).

Black American West Museum is informative and worth a visit!

Visited September 2013
5 Thank MostlyHarmless2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Little Rock, Arkansas
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“You learn something new everyday”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 October 2013 credit card Amex Cardmember Review

This is a well put together museum. It's small but has a tremendous amount of information you can't get anywhere else...

Visited September 2013
1 Thank trillywood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton, Georgia
Level Contributor
80 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“A Great Learning Experience”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 July 2013 via mobile

Fantastic information about the history of black Americans in the West from cowboys to the town of Dearfield. Lots of "facts" if you take the time to read the information.

Visited July 2013
3 Thank SamKnows
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ashburn, Virginia
Level Contributor
112 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Hidden Gem”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 June 2013

The Black American West Museum is a little hidden gem in Denver. Naomi the visitor guide is so passionate about what she does, that she is truly an asset to the museum. My best friend, and I spent five days on various tours and unanimously have decided, this was the best tour of our trip. We took the light rail train and the museum is across the street from it. If you visit Denver it is a must see.

Visited June 2013
3 Thank Gamma I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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