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Superior, Colorado got its start as a coal-mining town south of Boulder; the town was founded in 1896 and incorporated in 1904 after the first mines in the area were developed in the late 1800's. Superior was reportedly named after the "superior" quality of the local coal, and the mining industry was central to the town's history until the closure of the Industrial Mine in 1945.
After the passing of the coal mines, Superior became a quiet farming and ranching community, and its population remained around 250 until 1987, at which time the development of Rock Creek Ranch was begun south of the original town. Through the year 2000, 1,900 single-family homes and 1,600 multi-family homes were developed in Rock Creek, swelling Superior's population by several thousand percent to approximately 9,000. A second development west of the original town, named Sagamore, was also started. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, Superior covered seven square miles, including 540 acres of park and open space and 25 miles of trails.
Sources: City-data.com, townofsuperior.com