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Identifier: WH564


Mead family photographs comprise the bulk of the collection. Edgar A. Mead's Spanish-American War memorabilia also forms a portion of the collection and includes medals, brass uniform accouterments, a song book, programs, newspaper clippings and articles. Limited papers delineate Avery family and Mead family genealogy and describe the Avery home at 328 West Mountain Avenue, Fort Collins, Colorado, which has been preserved as a museum and listed on the Register of Historic Places.


The series primarily contains Edgar Mead's Spanish American War memorabilia, which includes medals and uniform items. Brief genealogy notes and articles document both Avery family and Mead family histories. Limited brochures, reports and clippings describe Franklin Avery's home at 328 West Mountain Avenue, Fort Collins, Colorado, which has been preserved as a museum and listed on the Register of Historic Places.


Photographs documenting Edgar A. Mead's experiences in the Spanish American War and Kenneth Mead's experiences during World War II comprise the bulk of the series. Limited photographs depict other Mead family members. Also included are loose photograph album pages depicting views of Denver, Colorado in the 1920s. There is also one photo of Edgar Avery Mead with the rest of the 1895 Colorado Agricultural College (now Colorado State University) Collegian Board of Editors from the Silver Spruce yearbook. There are no photographs of the Avery family.


  • TBD

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.


Literary and copyrights, as appropriate, have been assigned to the Denver Public Library.All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from material in the collection should be discussed with the appropriate librarian or archivist. Permission for publication may be given on behalf of the Denver Public Library as the owner of the physical item. It is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained by the customer. The Library does not assume any responsibility for infringement of copyright or publication rights of the manuscript held by the writer, heirs, donors, or executors. Reproduction restrictions are decided on a case-by-case basis.


Franklin Capen Avery was born at Ledyard (Cayuga county), New York April 8, 1849, the second of five children born to Edgar and Eliza (Worthing) Avery. After joining Nathan Meeker's Union Colony, Avery moved to Greeley, Colorado in May 1870 where he assisted in surveying the Colony and laying out its streets. In 1871, Avery entered the cattle business in Laporte, Colorado and became a principal shareholder in the Akin Live Stock Company. In 1872, he was appointed engineer for the Fort Collins Agricultural Colony where he laid out and platted the town. Eventually, Avery became an extensive property holder in Colorado's Larimer and Weld counties. In November 1880, Avery founded the Larimer County Bank, later known as the First National Bank. He served as president from 1881 until 1910, when he sold his interests and retired. Throughout his life, Avery was active in agricultural irrigation projects. He also served three terms as a member of the Fort Collins city council.

Avery married Sarah Edson on February 24, 1876, and the couple built a four-bedroom Victorian house of local sandstone. Their home, located at 328 West Mountain Avenue, Fort Collins, Colorado has been fully restored and is maintained as a museum. It is listed on the Register of Historic Places.

Franklin Avery died April 24, 1923.

Edgar Avery Mead was also born in Ledyard, New York September 1, 1872 to Alexander Mead, Jr. and Louise Avery, Franklin Avery's sister. Mead moved to Greeley, Colorado with his family in 1878. He graduated from Colorado Agriculture and Mechanical College (now Colorado State University), where he gained a reputation as an athlete. In 1898, Mead enlisted with the 1st Colorado Volunteer Infantry Regiment and served in the Philippines during the Spanish American War. Following the war, he worked as a rancher and was elected Mayor of Ault, Colorado. In 1912, Mead moved to Denver, where he managed the White Automobile Company. Mead died at Weld County Hospital February 19, 1961.

Kenneth Mead, son of Edgar A. Mead, was born October 9, 1902 in Ault, Colorado. He attended Clark Preparatory School in New York and Cornell University. In 1928, he graduated from the University of Colorado. After college, Mead worked as a Cameraman for MGM and as a photographer for Time and National Geographic magazines. With the outbreak of World War II, Mead joined the Army Air Corps and served in the Pacific. He was discharged in 1946 as a lieutenant colonel and later joined the Colorado Air National Guard. After the war, Mead worked for Continental Oil and Humble Oil before becoming an independent oil broker. Mead was a member of the Wigwam Club, the Denver Athletic Club, the Denver Country Club and Christ Episcopal Church. He passed away September 21, 1992 at Denver's University Hospital.


1 Boxes (.25 linear feet)

1 PhotoBoxes (.25 linear feet)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, Helen Mead, 1993.


The Western History/Genealogy Department has additional collections with material related to Edgar A. Mead including:

Spanish-American War Colorado Soldiers WH1434


Number of Boxes: 1 (.25 linear feet)

Number of PhotoBoxes: 1 (.25 linear feet)


Dennis Hagen

July 2009


Ellen Zazzarino

Avery-Mead Family Papers
July 2009
Language of description
English, Old (ca.450-1100)
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Denver Public Library, Western History and Genealogy Repository

10 W. 14th Ave. Pkwy
Denver CO 80204 United States