Marijuana Mansion History
The Creswell House
Originally known as The Creswell House, the Marijuana Mansion was built in 1889 for the family of Joseph Creswell. Creswell was a prominent businessman that made his living providing the infrastructure for steam heating in the Denver’s downtown buildings. He served as the president of the Colorado Marble & Mining Company and the Manufacturers Exchange, where he advocated to transform the city into a manufacturing hub.
The Creswell’s would have been a typical upper middle class family at the turn of the century as evidenced by the location of the house on the middle of the street. Homes of wealthier families would have been located on more prominent corner locations and be much larger. The property also includes a carriage house, which is located behind the mansion.
This unique dwelling was designed by well-known Denver architect John J. Huddart. Huddart had a successful career, designing six courthouses, various armories, schools, libraries and distinct homes, such as the Creswell Mansion, across Colorado. The three-floor, 4,200 square ft home is considered one of the city’s best examples of “high Victorian” architecture, combining elements of Richardsonian Romanesque Revival with ornate Queen Anne influences.
The eclectic exterior of the sandstone mansion features floral and fish carvings, along with Greco-Roman embellishments that lead up to a balcony and continue around three chimneys. The front of the house is also adorned with various statues including a griffin, two male Fu dogs, an eagle, and a gargoyle.
The mansion is one of the last original structures that remains in the area that was dubbed as “Millionaire’s Row” in the late 1800s. The house was later designated as a landmark and named to the National Register of Historic Properties in 1977.
The Mansion’s Weed-Entangled Past
In more recent years, the home was utilized as offices and ended up playing an important role in the legalization of marijuana, thus earning its new nickname, “The Marijuana Mansion.” In 2013, the law firm of Vicente Sederberg LLP, moved their office into the mansion right after they had participated in writing Amendment 64.
Amendment 64 was a Colorado Marijuana Legalization Amendment that passed with a 55 percent vote in November of the 2012 election and was an official amendment of the Colorado Constitution on December 10th, 2012. This amendment allows individuals above the age of 21 to purchase and consume marijuana up to an ounce as well as farm up to six plants.
Also entangled in this amendment was that a regulated structure was to be thought out and planned by July 2013; the sale, cultivation and processing of Marijuana was to be allowed by January 1st, 2014. The passage of this amendment set the tone for many more states to follow in the legalization of marijuana.
After the passage of Amendment 64 , then-Governor John Hickenlooper signed an executive order establishing the Task Force on the Implementation of Amendment 64, to determine the “policy, legal and procedural issues” of the industry in this state.
Vicente Sederberg was appointed as one of the members of this task force, and carried out the implementation of Amendment 64 in the Marijuana Mansion. During this time, the National Cannabis Industry Association also moved into the mansion and the building became the Colorado headquarters for the Marijuana Project.
In February 2018, Cindy Sovine, a cannabis lobbyist, registered for the city’s first public consumption license with the hopes to turn Marijuana Mansion into the Utopian Spa, a cannabis-friendly wellness retreat. The city denied her proposal, stating that the building was too close to a child-care facility. The mansion was rented as office space for an apartment-construction project taking place next door.
In September 2019, the mansion was purchased by its current owner, who restored the building to its former glory. Marijuana Mansion was transformed into an immersive cannabis-themed exhibit and private event space, collaborating with several local female artists to bring this grand vision to life.
Entry Foyer and Grand Staircase
A step back in time featuring original fireplaces with wood carvings, original tiles, and beautiful stained glass in many rooms. Here, you’ll learn about the mansion’s deep-rooted history with marijuana and its ties to Amendment 64, the first successful recreational marijuana bill passed in 2012.
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