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Knights of Columbus Hall, a history

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STEWARTS COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHERS, 1960
  • Stewarts Commercial Photographers, 1960

1928 — Architect Thomas MacLaren (also responsible for such iconic buildings as Colorado Springs City Auditorium and Colorado Springs City Hall) designs a lodge hall for the Knights of Columbus, Colorado Springs Council 582. It costs $35,000 to erect. Notable features: a gymnasium, a kitchen, tearoom and community rooms for area youth. It stands as MacLaren's final building before his death this same year.

1937 — The city of Colorado Springs purchases Knights of Columbus Hall for $13,000 and establishes a board of directors that acquires the collection of the Colorado Springs Pioneer Association, to be displayed in the building. This collection forms the beginnings of the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum.

1950s — Judged "too small to display many of its artifacts," the Pioneers Museum attempts to raise $25,000 for an addition to the building, but it's eventually determined that the city should fund the addition.

1961 — A $56,478, two-story addition nearly doubles the building's size, expanding it to the south. Original materials and artifacts from the William S. and Helen Hunt Jackson house are moved to the museum.

1977 — The Pioneers Museum moves out of Knights of Columbus Hall to its current location in the former El Paso County Courthouse.

1978 — The architectural firm of Robert Muir and Associates purchases and moves into Knights of Columbus Hall, turning the building into offices.

1988 — Robert Muir and Associates move out of the building, which remains vacant until the early '90s.

1991 — The Pikes Peak Library District purchases Knights of Columbus Hall from Top Savings Bank for $175,000 — to become part of what is now the Penrose Library Campus.

1996 — An elevator and set of stairs are installed.

2015 — The PPLD board of trustees reviews a plan to turn Knights of Columbus Hall into a community space once again, wishing to expand its programming and host art exhibits, displays, lectures and more.

2017 — The Flux Capacitor, a recently closed DIY venue in Colorado Springs, hosts a town hall where John Spears, executive director of the Pikes Peak Library District, finds inspiration to work with Flux and other DIY organizations to revitalize the building.


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