The Sopris Sun

Historic Thompson House makes national register

Historic Thompson House makes national register

Sopris Sun Staff Report

The
historic Thompson House, Carbondale’s pioneer-home museum, is now
officially on the National Register of Historic Places. The announcement
was made by Beth White, executive director of the Mt. Sopris Historical
Society, on Monday.

According
to its website, The National Register of Historic Places is “the
official list of the Nation’s historic places worthy of preservation.”
Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the
National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places is part of a
national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts
to identify, evaluate, and protect America’s historic and archeological
resources.

Landmarks
considered for National Register designation go through a long
application process that considers the historical importance of the
property, its condition and the manner in which it represents a
particular architectural style or historical era. In the case of the
Thompson House, the application was a collaborative process among the
Mt. Sopris Historical Society, the town of Carbondale, and the state of
Colorado. Darrell Munsell and Suzannah Reid prepared and submitted the
nomination with the approval of Thompson House owner Frieda Wallison and
the support of the Lew Ron Thompson Family.

The
Colorado Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation stated in its
report that the Thompson House was an “outstanding candidate” for
national nomination.

The
Thompson House, now a museum operated by the Mt Sopris Historical
Society and located at the north end of the River Valley Ranch
subdivision, contains household goods and furnishings original to the
home, which was built in the 1880s for newlyweds Oscar and Hattie
Thompson.

Members
of the Thompson family owned the home until just recently and gifted
the entire contents, including photographs and documents, to the Mt
Sopris Historical Society in 2009.

“Inclusion
on the National Register promises to draw visitors from all over to the
Thompson House Museum,” said White. “Cultural heritage tourists
generally stay one day longer in an area than other tourists, and
patronize local businesses including restaurants, shops and hotels.”

The Thompson House is open to the public for guided tours from 2-5 p.m. in the summer and early fall. Admission is $10.

Next steps:

The
Mt. Sopris Historical Society hosts a champagne toast for the Thompson
House’s addition to the National Register of Historic Places from 5 to 8
p.m. on Aug. 8.

How to get there:

•    From Main Street, head south on Highway 133;

•    Turn right at the first River Valley Ranch entrance (North Bridge Drive);

•    Take the first right at the tennis courts;

•    Turn right again at the driveway just past the tennis courts parking lot;

You’ll
be directed to the lawn on the south side of the house, which should be
manageable for most vehicles except maybe the red Ferrari that’s been
parked around town all summer.