Two Ponds National Wildlife Refuge
Arvada, or as it was first named : Clear Creek, was the site of the first gold strike in Colorado. Lewis Ralston, a prospector from Georgia, dipped his sluice pan into a small creek at its confluence with Clear Creek and found about 1/4 ounce of gold on June 22, 1850. The group he was part of named the stream Ralston's Creek but they all left the next morning and headed off for the gold fields in California.
Ralston returned with several other men several years later and worked that placer deposit until it shortly ran out. Gold was found in hard rock veins in the mountains to the west in 1858 but Ralston and his buddies had found a better (more stable) living farming the fertile ground in the area and selling their crops to incoming miners. Their settlement was shortly known as Ralston Point but in 1870, the area was platted by Benjamin Wadsworth and Louis Reno, who renamed the site Arvada in honor of Hiram Arvada Haskin, brother-in-law of earlier settler Mary Wadsworth. Benjamin Wadsworth became the first postmaster of Arvada and the town was formally incorporated in 1904. In those days, Arvada claimed the tile "Celery Capital of the World."
The site of that original gold strike is now part of Gold Strike Park.
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