This is an early beta version that’s still a work in progress. We hope to develop and refine the contents going forward. In the meantime, we’re making it fully available to the public as-is. Started by the Jefferson County Historical Commission in the 1990s, it was transferred to the Golden History Museum-City of Golden in 2020.

Colorado School of Mines – Chauvenet Hall

AddressS.E. corner of Illinois and 14th Sts., Golden, 80401
QuadGolden, 1965 (1994)
SectionS34, T3S, R70W
SourceCSM Office of Public Information, 1/5/81; CSM Office of Institutional Advancement, 3/2/92.
Initialdate1997-04-23 00:00:00-06
HistoryChauvenet Hall is an early example of recycling. It is the result of combining two turn-of-the-century buildings into one building in which to teach mining at the Colorado School of Mines. The converted buildings were the original Power Plant and Assay buildings. The conversion took place in 1955. Currently the building houses several departments including, appropriately, Environmental Science. Dr. Regis Chauvenet was president of the Colorado School of Mines from 1883-1902 and was named President Emeritus in 1913. If anyone can be thought of as the person who set the course for the School of Mines to follow, Dr. Chauvenet can lay claim to that distinction. When he took over the administration, the school had very few full-time students. Most of the students attended for only as long as it took them to learn how to find signs of silver and gold when prospecting. By 1890 Dr. Chauvenet was able to do away with what he referred to as "scrap courses." He emphasized the need for mining and engineering curricula that would lead to a degree for the students. At this time there was no tuition for state residents, but others had to pay $100 a year. He also looked for the best teachers he could find. By the time Dr. Chauvenet retired in 1902, the Colorado School of Mines was firmly established as a degree-granting institution of higher education. When he passed away, Dr. Chauvenet left an unfinished history of the school that he had been writing. His widow donated it to the school, and a copy is available in the school's library.