A handful of homes in Cherry Hills Village, Colorado, were part of a little-known subdivision called Swastika Acres. The name comes from an old Denver company, before the Nazis used it.
CNN  — 

The Swastika Acres neighborhood of Cherry Hills Village, a town just outside Denver, will get a new name after a unanimous city council vote.

The new name will be Old Cherry Hills, CNN affiliate KDVR reported.

The area had once been home to the Denver Land Swastika Company, a company that chose its name before Nazis adopted the swastika symbol.

Though the name doesn’t appear on any visible signs in the community, City Councilman Dan Sheldon told KDVR the name still appears in real estate documents.

“Some buyers are savvy enough to read the documents and really dig in and understand what their legal description of their property is,” he said. “That’s the only way you’d know.”

A previous legal process had required that 100% of property owners back a name change, but the city adopted a new ordinance that required a simple majority to favor removing a name that’s long been associated with racism and right-wing nationalism, according to KDVR.

A symbol of hate with peaceful origins

The term swastika is derived from the Sanskrit word “svastika,” which means “good fortune,” according to the United States Memorial Holocaust Museum. The symbol first appeared about 7,000 years ago, and is considered a sacred symbol in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and other belief systems. It sometimes adorns the walls of houses or temples.

The symbol became popular in Europe in the late 19th century and early 20th century, in part as Europeans learned about ancient civilizations through the work of archaeological excavations.

The Nazi Party adopted the hooked cross as its symbol in 1920 during a time when other far-right nationalist movements in Europe were also beginning to use it, the museum says.