Lawson, Colorado

One History, One Community, One Mountain Waterpark

The Red Elephant Mines were discovered in 1876. John Coburn came to the area from the East, settled in the area, and designed the town as a place where families could be comfortable raising children. He called it Free America, which was Lawson’s original name. When the railroad came through and the site for the depot was selected, a portion of Free America was picked. This land was owned by John Coburn’s least favorite son-in-law, Alex Lawson. Then, Free America became known as Lawson.

In 1893, Lawson had almost 300 registered voters. When the bottom fell out of the silver market, there was little or no work and the population fell. Few businesses survived. The Lawson school consolidated with the county in 1959. The construction of I-70 in the 1960’s gobbled up the north side of Lawson. Even the oldest and longest surviving business, W.E. Anderson General Store, closed its doors in the mid-1960’s.

New homes have sprung up, creating a pleasant place to raise children. In 2010, the Lawson Water Park opened their doors, adding to the tourist attractions in the area.

Lawson Whitewater Park

The Lawson Whitewater Park is used for rafting, kayaking and fishing. The park includes over 400 feet of trails, terracing and public access points. There is parking, public restrooms and a changing area. Great for recreational canoeing, kayaking, and splashing fun!