The Dransfeldt Building at 3431–35 South Broadway in Englewood was built in 1924 by local farmer Hans Dransfeldt. The north side of the building was occupied by the Englewood Herald and Enterprise for nearly three decades, while the south side served as a popular dairy and creamery in the days before home refrigeration. After being sold to new owners in 2014, the building was restored to its original exterior configuration and listed on the State Register of Historic Properties in 2016.
The Dransfeldt Building is named for Hans Clausen Dransfeldt, a Danish farmer who came to the United States in 1900 and found work on the Camenisch family farm in Englewood. In 1905 Dransfeldt married Mary Gotz, a Camenisch family relative. They established a farm in an area called Melvin, located at the site of what is now the Cherry Creek Reservoir. There Dransfeldt became active in the community, donating land for the local school and serving on the school board.
In 1924, with the Dransfeldt family still living on the farm in Melvin, Hans Dransfeldt financed a new commercial building in Englewood. Located on the 3400 block of South Broadway, in the heart of the city’s developing business district, the building was intended to generate rental income for the family. Like other commercial buildings going up along South Broadway at the time, it was a simple, one-story masonry structure. A facade of red bricks with buff brick details framed two storefronts with transom panels over doors flanked by large windows.
After Hans and Mary Dransfeldt retired from farming, they moved to Englewood. Hans was an active member of the International Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) and helped build the IOOF lodge just north of the Dransfeldt Building. The Dransfeldt Building remained in the Dransfeldt family for ninety years.
Englewood Herald and Enterprise
The Dransfeldt Building’s tenants soon made it an important social and cultural space in Englewood. One of its first and longest-lasting tenants was the city’s main local newspaper, the Englewood Herald and Enterprise, which moved into the north storefront in 1925.
The Herald and the Enterprise had both existed as separate papers for several years before they were merged by owner William Maxwell in 1923. Two years later, the combined paper was acquired by former Greeley Tribune night editor Stuart Lovelace and printer Clark Page. They quickly decided to move the newspaper’s offices to Dransfeldt’s new building on South Broadway. Lovelace became the editor of the Englewood paper; Page was the business manager, and Lovelace’s wife, Eva, assumed the role of society editor.
The Lovelaces bought out Page in 1929 and invested in the paper throughout the Depression, gradually expanding it from eight pages per weekly issue in the 1920s to at least twenty-eight pages per issue in the early 1950s. Meanwhile, in the days before television and Internet, the newspaper’s offices on South Broadway became a crucial hub of news and information. During and after World War II, when Englewood suffered from an acute housing shortage, crowds swarmed the office’s reception area to see rent ads as soon as they were phoned in.
By the early 1950s, the Herald and Enterprise had strong advertising and circulation numbers, and the north half of the Dransfeldt Building was no longer large enough to accommodate the growing operation. In 1953 the Lovelaces decided to move the paper to a new headquarters a block east on South Acoma Street.
While the north side of the Dransfeldt Building was home to the Englewood Herald and Enterprise, the south side was occupied starting in the late 1920s by Puritan Creamery. Founded by Bill Nystrom, Puritan Creamery bought raw milk from nearby Owens farm (located on West Belleview Avenue), pasteurized it, and used it to make cottage cheese, butter, ice cream, and other dairy products. Before the rise of home refrigeration, dairy stores like Puritan Creamery dotted the landscape and were a daily destination for most families. Puritan Creamery also had a soda fountain, which was popular among local workers and students.
In 1938 Nystrom sold the creamery to O. W. Bauer. Within a few years, however, Bauer took a job as a manager at Robinson and Carlson-Frink Dairy. He sold Puritan Creamery, and the business left the Dransfeldt Building in about 1942.
When the Herald and Enterprise moved out in 1953, the Dransfeldt Building received a brick addition off the back, which significantly expanded the building’s space. Over the next few decades, the building’s two storefronts were occupied by a wide variety of businesses, including Bill Owens Magnavox, Flash Formals, Lavell’s Café, Baby Bar, and Vaughan’s Music Center. The interiors were altered several times to accommodate new tenants, and the storefronts were redone with aluminum and plate glass. Throughout these changes, the north half of the building retained a historic painted sign for the Englewood Herald and Enterprise above the door.
In 2014 descendants of the Dransfeldt family sold the building to new owners. The new owners soon restored the storefronts to their original look and found two tenants: a fitness center called Palango in the north half of the building, and a bar, the Englewood Grand, in the south half. In 2016 the building was listed on the State Register of Historic Properties.