Woods Mortuary

Address: 1100 Washington Ave., Golden, 80401

The Woods Mortuary building is one of the oldest historical buildings on Washington Avenue, and it represents Golden's early commercial developments. The original owner may have been Elmus Smith. In 1886 the south half of the building was used as a dry goods store. Then in the 1920s it became the Woods Mortuary. The building has been extensively remodeled. The original architectural character can still be seen, mostly in the form of second floor details. There were actually two buildings, the north half and the south half. The north half building was built around 1872. It was built in the style of the nineteenth century commercial and Italian flair and a single storefront. The building is two stories high and constructed of brick. The roof is flat and steeped. There are corbeled brick cornices with three windows on the second story. The facade has segmental arches with ornate metal hoods. The windows are framed by semi-circular brick arches. The storefront originally had a recessed entrance that was flanked by display windows. The first floor facade is now remodeled with stucco siding and new windows and doors. The side of the building has double-hung windows and segmented arches; some of these have been bricked in. There is an attached garage in the back. A new side door has been added with a canopy. The building had at one time several corbeled brick chimneys that have since been removed. The south half of the building was built some time before 1886. This building, like the north half, is in the style that was typical nineteenth century commercial with a single storefront. It is a two-story brick building with a flat roof, corbelled brick cornice. There are three windows on the second story with segmented stone arches. The lintels, sills, and cornices have corbelled brick trim. Originally this building, too, had a recessed entrance flanked by display windows. The first floor facade is now remodeled with stucco siding and has new windows and doors. The brick has been painted. Woods Mortuary is one of Golden's early-day businesses, and unfortunately, a very necessary one. It was established by William "Billy" Woods in the 1920s where it is still located today. He was a white-haired, big man. The mortuary was associated with the John C. Davidson Furniture Store next door, as was the custom then. Davidson was a licensed embalmer. The mortuary had plants in the curtained front windows for that extra "homey" touch. Although the building has been remodeled, the brick building reflects downtown Golden's past of railroad development and is representative of towns with the nineteenth century commercial architecture.
Quad Map/Date: Golden, 1965 (1994)
Sec/Town/Range: S28, T3S, R70W
Elevation: 5674
Source: Brown, Georgina, "The Shining Mountains," p. 78; Simmons, Laurie et al, "1989 Survey of Historic Buildings in Downtown Golden," p. 19.
Other Names: Elmus Smith Grocery Store

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