The Woodward-Baird House (also known as the “Little Grey House)” was built around 1870 and is located at 1733 Canyon Blvd. At the time of its construction this was a rough neighborhood with trains running by often and subject to regular floods. The one-and-one-half-story balloon frame of this house is clad with vertical board-and-batten siding. The side-gable roof has a rear shed extension, with a 6-foot-deep porch along the front facing the busy street. It is a relic of Boulder’s mining camp days.
The house changed ownership many times in the late 1800s. Farmer Robert Culver owned the land in this area, but sold the property to Robert Woodard in 1871 who sold it to Wolf Hannenstein in 1872 who sold it Amos and Augusta Bixby in 1880. Mr. Bixby served as postmaster, owned the “Boulder County Herald,” newspaper and wrote Boulder’s first history in 1880 called History of Clear Creek and Boulder Valleys. He turned around and sold it to Swedish immigrant Anders J. Nelson in 1882. Later in 1908 to 1910, one of Boulder’s early black families, Albert Stephens, his wife Eliza, and her nephew Robert lived in this house. Albert worked as headwaiter at the O’Connor Hotel on Walnut Street. He was born in Georgia, and Eliza and Robert were born in Kentucky.
In 1977, Historic Boulder purchased the house to save it, rehabilitated it because it was in poor condition, and had it landmarked in 1978. When the Stephens were living here, no one would imagine that this little house would be so important that the city considered it worthy of preservation. In fact, the entire neighborhood was designated as the Chamberlain Historic District in 1995 honoring the working-class citizens who made it their home for so many years. The Little Grey House served as the headquarters of Historic Boulder until 1993 when it was sold subject to a conservation easement to ensure its protection from demolition into the future.