In 1858, gold was discovered where Little Dry Creek joins the South Platte River, four miles north of what is today Littleton. After the initial rush of gold-seekers, agriculture sustained growth when the gold deposits played out. In 1861, Richard S. Little filed claims for agricultural land along the South Platte River in what would become Littleton. Little was not only a farmer but a land developer, and he filed his plat at the Arapahoe County Courthouse in 1872 for streets and homes on his property. When the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad built south from Denver through Littleton in 1871, development soon followed, and Little had no shortage of buyers for his plots of land. Thus began Littleton, and over the years of boom and bust, this early settlement has transitioned from village to county seat to one of Denver's finest suburbs.