Topics in History: National Western Stock Show

National Western Stock Show

Littleton Independent, 1906

The first National Western Stock Show was held January 29 through February 3, 1906 at the Denver Union Stockyards.  Since then, it has been held in January every year with the exception of 1915 when it was cancelled due to an outbreak of hoof and mouth.  Organization for the event began in 1905 when a group of agriculturalists, including a future governor of Colorado, determined there was a need to hold an annual stock show to demonstrate better breeding and feeding techniques to western state stockmen. Two years later the show was expanded to include a horse show and allowed for participants from around the world.  By 1931 two more events had been added; the 4-H Roundup and a rodeo.  

Palisade Tribune, 1951

As attendance to the stock show grew, so did the stockyards site.  The National Amphitheater and Livestock Pavilion, today known as the Arena, was completed in 1909. The Coliseum was completed in 1952. By 1981 the site was comprised of numerous buildings, more than twenty acres of stockyards, and several acres of parking. Each year the National Western Stock Show continues to attract crowds, setting new records for attendance.

Related Colorado Historic Newspaper Articles

Early Stock Shows

National Western Stock Show

The National Western Stock Show 1910

Stock Prices

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