620 West Bleeker Street (Behind the Wheeler/Stallard Museum)
Hours of Operation:
9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday*
For research assistance, please call 970.925.3721 to make an appointment.
*The Archive Office is closed for major holidays, including Martin Luther King Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.
Located on the grounds of Ruth Whyte Park, adjacent to the Wheeler/Stallard Museum, the Archive Building is home to the Society’s archives and a significant portion of the AHS Collection. The replica house was built in 1977 and in 2017, AHS completed a $1 million renovation of the Archive Building. Thanks to the collective generosity of many, the Archive Building now features community space for exhibitions, educational programming, and events; a 35% increase in our collection storage capacity; a state-of-the-art climate control system and advanced hazard-protection system to safeguard our collection; and additional space for offices.
AHS operates one of the largest public archives on the Western Slope, an invaluable public resource for the local and regional community. Featuring priceless artifacts from every era of the area’s history, the AHS Collection includes more than 67,000 historical items including maps of 1800s mining claims, 46,000 images, ledgers, oral histories, moving images, the entire Aspen Times newspaper archive since 1881, over 7,500 objects, and more. These artifacts and records provide vital information about the history and heritage of the Aspen/Snowmass area. AHS ensures the information is preserved according to archival best practices for the benefit of the community.
The public is invited to use the archives for research, for anything from genealogy to birth certificates to historic land use records. Archive technicians are available for research assistance, appointments are recommended. In addition, AHS manages an ever-growing online collection at archiveaspen.org where the public can search by keyword, or purchase photo prints. Research assistance and complete archive access is available by appointment, call 970.925.3721.
Currently on display in the Community Gallery,* The Durrance Collection display features photographs by Margaret and Dick Durrance, whose collection was donated to Aspen Historical Society in 2018 by their sons, Dick Jr. and Dave Durrance. Curated from over 600 images, the display captures Aspen and Aspenites beginning in the 1940s. Margaret Durrance was a professional photographer who worked with her husband while he pursued film projects; her work appeared in national magazines such as LIFE, Look, Sports Illustrated and National Geographic. The collection features color as well as black and white images and focuses on skiing and ski races as well as Aspen’s culture of music and intellectual pursuits. The Durrances’ long history in the area and their immense contributions to the development of Aspen and Snowmass are reflected in the 90 + images on display. The Collection was accessioned with support from the Fred & Elli Iselin Foundation; it is available to view online at www.archiveaspen.org.
*The Community Gallery is open during Archive Building hours, however it is best to call ahead to confirm access in case there are meetings or gatherings in the room that prohibit viewing of the display.