The Castello House, the gray brick building at 755 St. Francois Street, is named after one of Florissant’s more prominent early families.
It is well known that Charles Castello was mayor of Florissant from 1865 until 1890. This home was not named for him, however, but for his grandfather Michael.
Michael was the first of his family to leave Ireland and come to America in the very early 1800s, marrying and settling in Pennsylvania.
Prior to 1820, he moved his family to Florissant and purchased this property from Antoine Riviere. The records are unclear whether the house was on the property at this time or was built by Castello soon afterward.
Land records tell us that the property was purchased in July 1820 for “$100 in hand and $600 to be paid hereafter,” part of which was paid in shaven deer skins. Skins were legal tender and even accepted by the tax collector at the rate of three pounds to the dollar from October to April.
Michael and his wife lived the rest of their life in this home where they took an active part in the village affairs. Michael was one of the trustees of Florissant, then named St. Ferdinand, when it was incorporated in 1829.
While most of the family settled in the Florissant Valley, it was Michael’s oldest son, James, who is credited for establishing Florissant, CO in the 1860s.
The property remained in the Castello family until after the Civil War. The house has been restored and is maintained by its current owners, Patrick and Jane Boyle.
To learn more about the Castello family, Florissant, CO or Charles Castello’s long term as Mayor of Florissant, visit Historic Florissant, Inc. in the Franz Gittemeier House, 1067 Dunn Road.
Information courtesy of Historic Florissant.