Unsinkable Legend in Land Locked Denver
Legends are created around characters like Molly Brown. She certainly deserves all the adoration, but so many people don’t know some of her best stories – the ones before and after the Titanic sank and the musical was written.
Molly Brown’s fame for most people comes from their experiences watching Titanic or the musical, The Unsinkable Molly Brown, but seeing her real home in Denver and hearing the story behind the stories makes her even more endearing. Her story can be found in many Molly Brown books, but there’s no better way to experience her life than to visit her home in Denver.
The gigantic local sandstone home only stands today because of a group called Historic Denver who saved the manor from demolition in 1970. Such a grand landmark almost met its demise due to its run down state after having been a home for wayward girls and apartments for many years. Light years away from its former grandeur, the home was slowly and lovingly restored to how it stands today – a tribute to its former owner.
Historians and fans of Margaret Brown worked to gather artifacts from her life and repair things still in the house. Luckily, the amazing anaglypta, or textured wallpaper, was still in the entry way and some light fixtures remained in the home. A large stained glass window was found broken into many pieces in the basement of the house and it was brought to life again and now decorates the staircase walls as it did in the early 1900s.
Sculptures with trays for calling cards were recovered; including one found in a local antique store and donated to the museum after it was verified as from the Brown home.
The sunroom was Molly Brown’s favorite room in the house and she hosted a French-speaking club there. A doorway on the porch led to a round, second story outdoor porch where orchestras would gather to play music for the guests of the Browns.
The home and its items are enchanting, but nothing serves the sandstone structure better than the person who lived in it. Molly Brown was never called Molly in her lifetime – that moniker came only after the musical – but rather she was called Maggie. Maggie Brown helped develop the first juvenile justice system in the United States, and raised funds for the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Denver. She had always been a part of the women’s suffragist efforts and ran for Senate in Colorado two times.
There is much more to learn about Margaret Brown. Start by visiting her home in Denver. It’s a grand place to meet the grand dame of Denver.
Photos are not allowed inside the home.