Once named “Galena City”, this deserted mining town located nine miles up the Henson Creek/Engineer Pass road was a dream of George S. Lee. His ambition was to become Colorado’s Governor and to change this tiny silver camp to the capitol city of the state of Colorado.

He built his home here with that purpose in mind in the 1870s, at the cost of a dollar a brick hauled from Pueblo, Colorado. It contained a beautiful living room, a small theater with an orchestra pit, several fine guest bedrooms and also a formal ballroom. Other than his home, he built the Henson Creek smelter and the sawmill.

Although his dreams and ambitions of governor were never realized, the name was changed to Capitol City.

The 200 acre townsite had several hotels, restaurants, saloons, smelters, a sawmill, post office, schoolhouse and several houses during the rich finds of 1877. The population was at one time 800, but as the price of silver dropped, the town began to be deserted. Litigation and transportation also aided in the downfall of Capitol City.

All that is left of the grandeur site is the Old U.S. Post Office and Lee’s Smelter Stack. The rest of the townsite has been reclaimed by aspen, mountain willows and evergreen trees.

Please note: There are several private homes and vacant parcels of private property in the Capitol City area. Please do not trespass.

Things to Do in Lake City and Hinsdale County

  • Visit year-round and discover seasons as dramatic as our ...

  • Hours, days, weeks, months...mix and match your want-to-do’s with your ...

  • Looking for spectacular views from your Car, Jeep or ATV? Find ghost towns - natural wonders - thrilling shows of ...

  • Explore the well-preserved history in our National Historic District, at our County Museum, and along the Silver Thread and ...
  • Stream and Lake Fishing in the area draws anglers back year after year, as faithfully as brook trout are drawn to dry ...
  • It takes only moments to hit a trail and leave civilization behind. Walking - Hiking - Horseback Riding - ...
  • A tremendous range of experiences - In-town trails for the family - Peaceful intermediate rides on trails and jeep roads - ...
  • From sparkling waterfalls, varied wildlife and vast wilderness areas, Hindsdale County offers up an array of Natural ...

  • With 96% public lands, area hunters are likely to have high harvest rates, quality animals, and a great overall ...

  • Make Lake City a beloved part of your family ...

  • Covered under a blanket of white for four months, Hinsdale County is a winter playground for ...

Latest News!

Business Directory

Visitor Center Info

970.944.2527  •  info@lakecity.com

Lake City/Hinsdale County Visitor Center
800 Gunnison Avenue
PO Box 430
Lake City, CO 81235
 
Hours:
Tues. - Sat  9am - 3pm
Sun - Mon - CLOSED