In the late 1960s, with potential annexation into Denver looming, residents of what is now Lakewood got to work crafting an incorporation plan to create their own city on the west side of the metro area. They succeeded exactly 50 years ago today — June 24, 1969 — and created Jefferson City, a moniker that only stuck for five months before City Council passed a resolution to change it to Lakewood. Lakewood, a name that came from a subdivision that had been established in 1889 at the intersection of West Colfax Avenue and Harlan Street, now ranks as Colorado’s fifth-largest city, with a population exceeding 155,000. Before incorporation, the Lakewood area was largely devoted to ranching, raising turkeys and dairy farms.

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