Nashville and Her Trade for 1870
By Charles Edwin Robert
The cookery and laundry departments are run by steam and the entire building is heated by steam—in truth, everything is in keeping with the most metropolitan and modern advancements in Hotel arrangements, and language has not yet been invented terse and concise enough to give in one breath its many conveniences. From its elegantly furnished parlors and drawing-rooms to the farthest removed apartment in its top-loftical stories all is neatness, cleanliness, splendor. Bath-rooms and water-closets are on each floor, while to its general appointments are added a Telegraph and Railroad Ticket Office, a News Depot, Shaving Saloons, Billiard Rooms, and a first class Bar.
The Maxwell House was erected at an outlay of about one-half million of dollars, and was opened to the public during October of last year, furnished and fitted in splendid style from top to bottom. Since that time its success has been unprecedented in this section, and we learn that by actual calculation not less than 12,000 names were included in its register the first six months of its career. The Maxwell House is owned by Mr. John Overton, of Nashville, a gentleman whose wealth, enterprise and public spirit has marked him as one of our most prominent citizens. It is under the control of Messrs. M. Kean & Co., who are also the well-known proprietors of the Louisville Hotel, Louisville, Kentucky. The senior of the firm gives the "Maxwell" his whole and undivided attention, and to whose liberality, enterprise and large-heartedness the Hotel to-day owes a goodly share of its grand success. In the office of the Maxwell may be found a trio of gentlemanly clerks—Messrs. William M. Bowles, F. M. Crawford and James Carr—well up in matters of affability, experience and attentiveness. The cuisine is under the supervision of Mr. Louis R. Kean, caterer and assistant general Superintendent—a " chip of the old block"—who, like his worthy progenitor, understands how to keep a hotel. The whole force employed in running the establishment numbers one hundred and fifty persons, and we verily believe none are retained who are wanting in efficiency, in its strongest sense, for the most systematic order is preserved throughout from parlor to kitchen.
The "Maxwell" enjoys an enviable situation as regards convenience to the Business Centres, Railroad Depots, Steamboat Landings, Churches, Public Buildings and points of interest about the Capital. Special and reduced rates are made by the proprietors with merchants and tradesmen visiting Nashville with a view of purchasing their goods in this market, and tourists and travelers will find the " Maxwell" a most delightful place to stop at.
The City Hotel is situated on the east side of the Public Square, in the very center of the "Wholesale trade of our City, and is a most desirable stopping place for the country merchant, or visitor to the City. It has 65 bed chambers, beside a full complement of parlors, sitting rooms, etc. It is three stories high, without the basement and four stories with it. It is built in the regular Southern Hotel style, having long porticos extending the full length of the building. Its location is high and airy, and the rear of the premises run back to banks of the Cumberland River. From the windows of the Hotel a most charming view of the City and of Edgefield, and their beautiful surroundings is obtained. On account of its admirable system of drainage the City Hotel was prominently spoken of as the Custom House site, and this fact only renders it the more desirable as a Hotel. To those who have been familiar with its history it need not be told that under its present management the establishment is perhaps on a better footing than has ever before been known, and strangers will find themselves perfectly at home in the hands of the experienced proprietors, courteous clerks and attentive waiters. The table is always supplied with the very best that the market affords, and its lodging apartments are unsurpassed. General Joel A. Battle, the senior of the proprietors, will be remembered by many of his old comrades in arms as the commander of the 20th Tennessee Regiment, of the late "so-called." Patriarchal in appearance, and courteous and hospitable by nature, he cannot fail, by his genial presence, to inspire his guest with a feeling of perfect ease and satisfaction. Mr. Stephen M. Jones, of this firm, is a gentleman of enlarged hotel experience, and in former days was the proprietor of the Commercial Hotel, Memphis, Tennessee, and during the war, of the Augusta Hotel, Augusta, Georgia.
The Stacey House was built in 1863, and was conducted by Capt. Stacey with marked success for a considerable time. He finally disposed of the property, but lately repurchased it, and in 1869, after refitting and refurnishing the establishment entire, opened under the most favorable auspices one of the neatest and best-arranged Hotels in this section. The Stacey House has some sixty sleeping apartments, a dining-hall, tidy and comfortable, capable of accommodating one hundred persons at one sitting, and many other conveniences modern and metropolitan. Church Street is the dividing line North and South of the City, and the Stacey House is at about its business center, and enjoys unrivalled advantages for the entertainment of guests who desire quietude conjoined with all the luxuries and most of the advantages of city life.
This new Hotel and Restaurant, kept on the European plan by Wm. T. Linck, Esq., is located on North College Street, first door South of the Louisville & Nashville Railroad Depot. The Linck Hotel is owned and was built during last year by its present proprietor.
It is perhaps one of the cosiest and neatest establishments of its kind in this section of country, and is as compact and convenient a building as any traveler would desire to stop at. Bath-rooms and water-closets are on each floor, and the utmost nicety and cleanliness is preserved throughout the entire building. The Linck Hotel dates its existence from the 12th of October last, at which time it was thrown open to the public with everything in it new and first class. The Restaurant table is supplied at all seasons with delicacies of home and foreign markets, and by no means the least noticeable feature of the establishment is the elegant Bar well-fitted and well stocked with everything in the way of drinkables. The European plan has rendered the Linck Hotel exceedingly popular, and takes well in Nashville.
There are in addition to the foregoing quite a number of other Hotels, small it is true, but are well kept and well patronized. They are located as follows:
Nicholson House, a first-class house in many particulars, I. C. Nicholson, proprietor, No. 185 Church Street.
Planters' Hotel, 83 North Summer Street, Mrs. S. A. Ballowe, proprietress.
Franklin House, 105 North College St., E. Franklin, proprietor.
Broadway Hotel, 82 Broad Street, Mrs. J. F. Keel, proprietress.
Gordon House, 90 South Market Street, Jno. H. Dix, proprietor.
Kendrick House, corner Church and McLemore Streets, B. McCabe