Since so many of you (including me) are interested in the history of our five candidate blocks for “Downtown Denver’s Worst Parking Lot,” I’m going to do a brief photo retrospective on each between now and Sunday when the voting closes. (If you haven’t voted yet, go here!)

All of these historical photos are courtesy of the Denver Public Library’s extensive online Western History and Genealogy Digital Image Collection.

Today we’ll start with Candidate #1, Block 039. It was tough finding any images from the Market side of this block where the existing surface parking lot is. This is all I could find:

From sometime between 1890 – 1910, here’s the Windsor Hotel at 18th and Larimer (Larimer is on the right, 18th is on the left) with the building at the corner of 18th and Market visible in the background. The Windsor Hotel was razed in 1959 and was replaced with the VOA’s Sunset Park residential project (Block 049) in the 1970s:

Also from sometime between 1890 and 1910, here’s a photo of 1755 Market (now the site of the parking garage for Alamo Plaza on Block 040) with the building at the corner of 18th and Market visible across 18th Street:

From a third direction, this time looking down 18th from Blake during the 1910s, here’s the Denver Rock Drill building (still standing today on Block 039) at 18th and Blake with the building at 18th and Market visible to the right. It looks like it may have held a business called “Colorado Saddlery”:

Finally, here’s a photo from 1979 of the Bank One tower under construction at 17th and Arapahoe. The Skyline Urban Renewal era was well underway as evidenced by the blocks and blocks of surface parking lots. The building at the corner of 18th and Market is no longer standing, although a building more in the middle of the 1800 block of Market is still standing and visible in this image. The Denver Rock Drill building is visible just above and to the left of the arrowhead:

That’s all I could find for Block 039. If you have more history to share about this block, please join in with a comment!

I’ll do the remaining four blocks over the next few days. In the meantime, enjoy!–and don’t forget to vote.