The subject of the Beverly Court and Coffee Shop was brought to light several weeks ago when Frank Campbell found three identical vintage postcards of it and sent one to the Press asking for information about the business.
Around the end of the 19thcentury, northerners beat summer heat and annoying flies by vacationing in the relaxing pristine southern mountains of Tennessee and North Carolina, known as the “Land of the Sky.”
Bobby Harrell delights in discussing his four years of after-school work experience at the John Sevier Hotel that began in 1949 when he was 13. His father, Iss and uncles, Henry Street and Earl Harrell also worked there. Street was maintenance supervisor.
The three-story Colonial Hotel that once stood at 215 E. Market Street had six large distinctive white pillars in front, a red brick edifice, a red tiled roof and an open porch at each level on the south end. The large back (north) portion of the complex was built perpendicular to the front section, giving it a “T” shape. In time, 213 E. Market became Colonial Hotel Annex and the property directly across the street turned into the Colonial Hotel Laundry.
Several months ago, I featured a column from Bobby Harrell about his memories of the John Sevier Hotel. I received two reader responses. The first was from Skip Oldham whose father was president of George Oldham Associates: “Oh what memories that article brought back,” said Skip. “For many years, our family business was in the hotel from the lobby to Roan Street. It was a beehive of activity virtually all the time.
Recently, a city resident whom I will call Mary revealed two stories to me that evolved around her late father, Frank (assumed name), a once well-known and successful downtown businessman in his day. In 1945, Frank escorted his young daughter to the Windsor Hotel to reveal a long-held secret that would be talked about by family members for years.
Johnson City Comet readers eagerly opened their newspapers on Sunday morning, April 10, 1910 to these attention-grabbing headlines: “Carnegie Hotel Burned Down This Morning - Alarm Sounded at One O’clock - Hotel Totally Destroyed.”