Cripple Creek evolved from the Colorado gold mining boom in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. St. Peter Parish was founded in 1892, when Denver Archbishop Nicholas Chrysostom Matz sent Cripple Creek its first resident priest, Father T. Volpe, who selected the highest hill in town for the church. The foundation stone was laid in 1897. A school located on the lot closest to the church opened in 1901, under the charge of the Sisters of Mercy. The Sisters of Mercy also opened the town’s first hospital in 1894 across the street from the church.
The town of Cripple Creek began to suffer from the decline of the gold mining boom, leading to lower attendances by the 1930s. The town held a relatively quiet existence for several decades before legalized gaming was approved for Cripple Creek in the early 1990s. Casinos quickly sprouted up and have brought new attention to the town as a tourist destination.
St. Peter is now a Chapel of Our Lady of the Woods Parish in Woodland Park. St. Peter Chapel features ornate altars in the pre-Vatican II style, liturgical artwork, and handcrafted stained glass. It also features a grotto dedicated to the Blessed Mother. A new roof installed a few years ago increased the church’s visibility, particularly when the roof reflects sunlight to the view of the townspeople.