Charles and Julia Semper Farm
, 9215 Pierce St.
The Charles and Julia Semper Farm, also known as the Allison Farm, is located north of West 92nd Avenue on the east side of Pierce Street. The Farmers' High Line Canal Trail goes through the property, providing easy pedestrian or bicycle access. A trailhead parking lot is also available at the farm.
The Semper Farm is located at the crossroads of the historic Cherokee Trail, historic irrigation canals and historic railroad alignments. The Sempers may have chosen this location because of the promising irrigation and transportation opportunities in the late 19th century.
The farmhouse was built by the Sempers in 1881-82 and they established a post office and grocery at their home. The nearby village of Semper grew up around the train depot and general store located south of West 92nd Avenue. A schoolhouse was built in the 1890s on the southeast portion of the intersection of the railroad with the current 92nd Avenue.
Julia Semper died in 1916 and Charles passed in 1917. They are interred at Fairmount Cemetery in Denver. George and John Allison purchased the farm in 1916. More history on Charles and Julia Semper, and the Semper Farm, is available in the application for landmark designation . John Allison's granddaughter, Linda Allison, also has provided a brief family history of the Allisons.
Today at the Semper-Allison Farm
The Semper-Allison Farm is an amazing educational resource, providing an opportunity to learn about local history, botany and wildlife. The exterior of the farmhouse was restored in 2008, using a 75 percent grant from the State Historical Fund and a cash match from the City’s allocation of federal Community Development Block Grant funds. The western two-story part of the house was built by Charles and Julia Semper in 1881. The eastern one-story portion was built by Mr. Allison in 1961.
After the house was restored, two Eagle Scout candidates organized community service projects in 2009 that completed the rehabilitation of two historic structures at the Farm. Both projects were reviewed and authorized by the Historic Landmark Board prior to implementation.
Jeffrey Stroud organized several professional tradesmen and many Scout and parent volunteers to rehabilitate the 1961 pumphouse. This project required use of the same siding and roofing as the 1961 farmhouse addition. Carpentry and plastering professionals also assisted. View the list of the donors and volunteers who worked on Jeffrey’s project.
Jack Kern cleaned out the 19th century brick-lined well used by the Sempers and the Allisons until the “new” pumphouse and well were installed in 1961. Jack and his crew built a rail fence around the well and installed a flagstone plaza around the well so that visitors can easily see the location of the well and how it was built. View Jack’s photos of the project.
Denver Urban Gardens supports a community garden, the Allison Community Gardens at Semper Farm. To become a gardener or help with the regular volunteer projects, contact DUG at 303-292-9900.