Designated: September 30, 2008
Current Owner: Colorado State Parks
Nominated By: Susie Trumble and Justin Ober
The brick ranch house was constructed in 1908 by Horace Henry Persse to complete the requirements for his application for land under the Homestead Act. The house was constructed of silica brick manufactured at the Silicated Brick Company, which is located approximately two miles north of the site. This house is one of two silica brick houses remaining in the Roxborough area, but the other house is in ruins.
David Reed bought the house from Persse in 1916 and remained there for four years. Not much is known about Reed. In 1920, Reed sold the house to Eliza Skinner for $4,250. She raised hogs on the land until 1929. In 1929, the property was purchased by Grace Church Jones, an artist whose work consisted of French and American landscapes, children at play, figure studies and still lifes. She painted murals in the school auditorium of Morey Middle School in Denver, which still exist today.
W. Bonner and La Cleta Brice purchased the property in 1946 and owned it for nearly 60 years coining it the Sundance Ranch. The family raised sheep, horses, turkeys, calves and pigs. The Brice family made many improvements to the ranch, including remodeling the interior of the brick house to add a bathroom, kitchen and electricity as well as rebuilding the large barn. The Brice’s hoped to operate the property as a dude ranch. La Cleta’s father built a two-unit log-sided guest cabin in 1950. Between 1979 and 2002, the family sold parts of the ranch to the State of Colorado for inclusion in Roxborough State Park.