Past Holiday Ornaments

The Governor's Residence at the Boettcher Mansion was first home to three of the state's most prominent families. The stately red brick mansion was completed in 1908 by the widow of Walter Cheesman who engaged one of the finest landscape architects in the country. George Kessler designed the terraced formal gardens surrounding the residence in the same grand manner as the home itself. Mr. Kessler was said to have declared that the beautiful grounds "outrivaled many of the romantic settings in Europe."

Shortly after Gladys Cheesman married John Evans at the new Cheesman mansion in November of 1908, the mansion was considered the "Queen of the Hill" in its neighborhood, and when Mrs. Cheesman died in 1923 and the property was purchased by Claude Boettcher, it was deemed the jewel of Denver's most prestigious neighborhood. Finally, in 1959, after considering demolishing the property, the Boettcher Foundation offered the mansion, its grounds and collections to the State of Colorado as its Governor's Mansion.

Over time the formal gardens and terraced grounds have only added to the elegance of the home itself and provided a magnificent setting for Colorado's First Families. While each new family changed the house and gardens to meet its own needs, some of the alterations were not always improvements. In fact, when renovations were made to accommodate Colorado's First Family in the 1960's, much of the grandeur of the lower gardens was lost. However, in 2007, the gardens were returned to the elegance and grandeur established by the original owners to provide a broader use of the facilities on the more accessible grounds.

The current gardens continue to provide expanded space for outdoor functions and are designed to frame a courtyard with a water feature inspired by the Kessler plan for water vanishing from the upper fountains only to reappear at the lower end of the gardens. A pergola is also a focal point and offers a contemporary interpretation of earlier site features. Overall, the mansion and its grounds provide a glorious background for events and ceremonies of state.

Designed especially for Governor and Mrs. Ritter and the Governor's Residence Preservation Fund, this ornament features the back of the governor's residence and its lovely gardens . Each 3-dimensional collectible ornament is made in the USA of solid brass, hand-finished in sparkling 24-karat gold. It is screen-printed in vivid colors using a unique artistic process.

Ornament2007 Ornament2008
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