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Lowell’s OV Ranch

Designated: March 30, 2010
Location: South of Castle Rock
Current Owner: The John E. Lowell and Beatrice B. Lowell Trust and the Lowell Family Foundation
Nominated by: Angie DeLeo and Penny Burdick

Historic Significance

Benjamin Hammar first homesteaded the property in 1877, where he raised sheep instead of cattle.  He was also associated with the development of the rhyolite quarry business having interest in the Colorado Stone Company.  Mary Ellis purchased the property from Benjamin Hammar and deeded it to her husband Charles Henry Ellis.  Charles was involved in early dairying and was a partner in the Douglas County Ditch and Reservoir Company.  He also helped to finance the Christ Episcopal Church, and established the OV cattle brand in 1899.

Henry Lowell and his family moved to the property in the early 1900s where Henry served as ranch manager.  In 1919, Henry became the sole owner of one of the largest ranches in the County.  As the Lowell Family settled into living on the ranch, they got involved in many local activities, and Henry became a community leader.  He was a member of the Masonic Order and the Pikes Peak Grange, served on the Douglas County School Board, and was the director of the National Farm Loan Association.  In addition, Henry Lowell’s son John served for four years as a director of the County’s Economic Development Council to influence growth planning, and as the County Assessor from 1964-1978.

The Lowell Family supported ranching through joining agriculture related organizations, such as the Douglas County Dairyman’s Association, the Douglas County Farm Bureau, the County Fair and 4-H. To that end, the Lowell Family established a foundation on March 10, 2003, to insure that the ranch continue to be used for agricultural education. The Colorado Agricultural Leadership Foundation (CALF) provides school tours, information about raising livestock and other youth agricultural education programs including providing 4-H support.

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