A select party of the beauty and chivalry of our city gathered in the parlors of the City Hotel on the evening of June 10, 1886. The occasion was to honor Miss Eunice Robinson, a sprightly young beauty of Greeneville, TN and niece of Mrs. W.A. Dickinson, the charming hostess of the City Hotel.
In August 1889, several newspaper employees from The Comet engaged in a journey that caused them to soar thousands of feet above the clouds... with their feet on the ground. The fortunate few were said to be one of the happiest parties to visit the Cloudland Hotel that summer.
Today's column shines the big yesteryear spotlight on the long deceased Austin Spring Hotel. It became one of Johnson City's premier resort and vacation hostelry. The East Tennessee, Virginia and Georgia Railroad once tabbed it as one of the finest vacation spots that could be reached by their railroad.
In September 1928, the Johnson City Chronicle announced that there were plans to proceed with the second of three expansions of the John Sevier Hotel. The first one, having 130 beds, was completed in 1924 on property adjacent to the Southern Depot. The second unit was to be appended to the south side of the first.
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.