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The site faded quickly, however, and by the summer of 1859 it was abandoned in favor of Auraria (named after the gold-mining town of Auraria, Georgia) and St. On November 22, 1858, General William Larimer, a land speculator from eastern Kansas Territory, placed cottonwood logs to stake a claim on the bluff overlooking the confluence of the South Platte River and Cherry Creek, across the creek from the existing mining settlement of Auraria, and on the site of the existing townsite of St. Larimer named the townsite Denver City to curry favor with Kansas Territorial Governor James W. Larimer hoped the town's name would help make it the county seat of Arapaho County but, unbeknownst to him, Governor Denver had already resigned from office.
The location was accessible to existing trails and was across the South Platte River from the site of seasonal encampments of the Cheyenne and Arapaho.
Denver citizens were proud when the rich chose Denver and were thrilled when Horace Tabor, the Leadville mining millionaire, built an impressive business block at 16th and Larimer as well as the elegant Tabor Grand Opera House.
Luxurious hotels, including the much-loved Brown Palace Hotel, soon followed, as well as splendid homes for millionaires like the Croke, Patterson, Campbell Mansion at 11th and Pennsylvania and the now-demolished Moffat Mansion at 8th and Grant.
Fundraising stalled before enough was raised, forcing these visionary leaders to take control of the debt-ridden railroad.
Despite challenges, on June 24, 1870, citizens cheered as the Denver Pacific completed the link to the transcontinental railroad, ushering in a new age of prosperity for Denver.
In 2016, Denver was named the best place to live in the United States by U. This was the first historical settlement in what was later to become the city of Denver.), officially the City and County of Denver, is the capital and most populous municipality of the U. The Denver downtown district is immediately east of the confluence of Cherry Creek with the South Platte River, approximately 12 mi (19 km) east of the foothills of the Rocky Mountains. Denver is in the South Platte River Valley on the western edge of the High Plains just east of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains.The city also experienced a depression in 1893 after the crash of silver prices.