The Wheeler Opera House was built at the height of the silver boom in 1889 by Jerome B. Wheeler and closed a few years later when the miners left town.
Two fires in 1912 devastated the Opera House and left the theater unusable for many years. In 1918, the City of Aspen purchased the Wheeler, and the building was restored to its current Victorian splendor in 1984. The Wheeler Opera House has played an integral role in the community's vibrant arts and entertainment scene ever since.
The Wheeler Opera House is on the State and National Historic Registers. The building is supported by a Real Estate Transfer Tax (RETT), which was first established in 1979 to support the renovation, and which currently enables local non-profit organizations to use the theater at a subsidized rate.