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Location

Greeley's realitive location is almost 50 miles northeast of Denver.
Greeley is located about 30 miles east of the foothills of The Rocky Mountains.

Greeley's absolute location is 40.4233° N, 104.7086° W.
Its longitude is 104.37 degrees west. (This is the location on the globe running east to west). Its latitude is 40.25 degrees north. (This is the location on the globe running north to south)

Greeley is the county seat of Weld County.
Weld County is larger than many states; including Rhode Island, Delaware, and Washington DC combined. It covers 4,004 square miles.

The land is mostly flat with some rolling prairies and low hills in the west.
The location was chosen to be beneficial (helpful) for farming. Being close to the Cache la Poudre and South Platte rivers was necessary for irrigation and farming. The easy access (close) to the railroad also helped to get settlers into town and provided trade access (goods could come to town and be sent from town on the trains).

Greeley is located in the Great Plains region of Colorado.
When Stephen Long saw this area in 1820, he called it the "Great American Desert". He did not think that anything worth growing would live here. But irrigation has made this area one of the largest agricultural areas in the United States. Nearby Greeley are the Pawnee Buttes and the National Grasslands. The area where Greeley stands today used to look like the Grasslands. The land is flat and has lots of grasses and other plants that do not need a lot of water. There are only few trees.

Greeley was close to the train tracks.
Being close to the tracks, made it easy for farmers to get their goods to market. It also made it easier to get beef to market and to get sugar beets for the factory. Many of the buisnesses along the train tracks are still for agricultural products.

The Poudre Learning Center teaches about the Poudre River.
It is a place where people can learn about the importance and history of the Poudre River. You can also learn about the biology (what lives there) and geology (the impact of the river on the land and how the river was formed) of the river. The building is a replica (copy) of the historic Hazelton School.

aerial view map
Above Physical Map from ©GlobeXplorer Above Map ©Mapquest
greeley from the air
Arial View of Greeley. Click to see larger. Close picture window to come back to this page. (Picture from the District 6 Greeley, Colorado - Birth of a City slideshow)
Weld County showing cities
Above Map from Weld County Website.
Weld County- Location Detail Map.http://www.co.weld.co.us/about/maps/map3.html.May 2009.
See a clickable map of Greeley highlighting Points of Interest.
Points of Interest
Story of our location Greeley Past
Henry T. West and Robert A. Cameron were selected to find the location for Greeley. They were to find a place close to transportation and water. It needed to have nice weather. They needed to be able to have a town that would follow temperance laws. How did the plains develop? Here is a display from the Greeley History Museum explaining the past.
This movie explains how the locating committee decided on the final location for Greeley. (Click to see full-credit) 1870 Map Credit David Rumsey Collection.
1870 Map Kansas Nebraska and Colorado Colorado Map 1870
(Click image to see full-sized) Here is the full map from 1870. It shows Kansas, Nebraska and Colorado. (Click to see full-credit) 1870 Map Credit David Rumsey Collection. (Click image to see full-sized) Here is the map from 1870 showing only Colorado. (Click to see full-credit) 1870 Map Credit David Rumsey Collection.
greeley with a grid  
©Brian P. Sullivan Manager City of Greeley GIS used with permission
Use the grid to find locations.
 
The Confluence (where two or more bodies of water meet) of the Platte and the Poudre. This is east of Greeley near the airport.
(Click on the thumbnail to see a larger picture.)
poudre at the confluence platte and poudre confluence
The Poudre side of the confluence. Where the Platte meets the Poudre. Look closely to see the difference in currents.
platte poudre confluence 2 platte poudre confluence 3
Where the Platte meets the Poudre. Look closely to see the difference in currents. Where the Platte meets the Poudre. Look closely to see the difference in currents.
plants at confluence plants at confluence 2
Some of the ground cover in the area. More plants in the area.
plants at confluence 3 plants at confluence 4
Flowers Another flower
plants at confluence 5  
Grasses  
The Poudre Learning Center
Poudre Learning Center
Poudre Learning Center The Hazelton School Building
Sign


The bell tower

Owl display
desks
Artifacts Old school desks
More about the Poudre Learning Center A page about the Pawnee Buttes
poudre Learning Center Pawnee Buttes Link
Along the railroad tracks, you can still see that agriculture is an important part of Greeley's economy. (How we make our money.)
along railroad tracks along tracks
Along the railroad tracks, there are warehouses, grain and bean elevators, and silos for storage. Along the tracks
looking up the tracks warehouse
Looking up the tracks Produce warehouse along the train tracks
silos  
Silos along the tracks  
Updated July 30, 2013 7:40 PM

 

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