North view of the new balcony starting to take shape! ( old structure was unsound)

(Directly to the left of the balcony is where the old "two story" outhouse stood.

An old gunny sack was discovered, that contained the ORIGINAL old wood scrolling

around the original posts holding up the balcony. New scrolling will be re-carved,

and placed back on all posts. Also discovered in the bag, was the old original "SPIKES"

attached to the top of the roof dormier windows!!

Tours of the old Hotel will be brought out the 2nd story

door, and onto the balcony. It was here, that in 1868, a visitor could relax on a rocker,

and see the river boats, approaching the Hermann Wharf, from around Kallameyers bluff, over two miles away.

All that remains of the old balcony. These grand old hand- hewn beams 3" by 11"

will be incorporated into the new construction.

Birds Eye View of the completed balcony and the beautiful handmade scrolling.

 

This is a view of the soffit and fascia, (the original to the hotel -1868)

You can start to see the repaired white and blue trim.

The original side entrance became the new main entrance at some point in the

history of the hotel. The original double doors were removed and a new style

door was added. Above you see Ken Heying's crew removing the newer door

to restore it back the way it once was... replacing the old double doors!

This picture above is the first time in about 100 years that the

hotel has been back to its original design!!

An old gunny sack was discovered, that contained the ORIGINAL old wood

scrolling around the original posts holding up the balcony. New scrolling willbe re-carved, and placed back on all posts. Also discovered in the bag, was the oldoriginal "SPIKES" attached to the top of the roof dormier windows!!After the initial discovery of the old hotel balcony scrolling, the pattern was taken to a local craftsman, and duplicated. This scrolling has not been attached to the balconiesof the hotel for over a hundred years.They were re-installed this spring 2009, bringing a whole newVictorian look to the balconies. Above is a picture of the

paper pattern that was used to make the "new" scrolling.

 

Another false wall, lead the team to discover that the ballroom, was in fact

TWICE the size of the present ballroom.

The green wall, painted "Dining room" was probably added around 1915,

during the time the hotel contracted with the MOPAC railroad,

as an "OFFICIAL" Missouri Pacific Railroad Dining Hall.

In which the ticketed passengers were issued a ticket, to use for food

at each refueling stop along the trains route. (a ticket was discovered)

March 2009

Here is the beginning of the restoration of the original, "Grand Ballroom".

Originally, the hotel was all open, common in those days, and the

"separator wall" was added much later.

This view above, (the false wall removed) hasn't been seen

since the "grand old Hotel re-opening ball"

presented by the hotel proprietor Mr. A.C. Leisner which marked

the formal re-opening of the hotel after the fire, of 1886.

It was this ball, in which over 400 well dressed Hermanites

attended, raising over $200.00 for the installation of the new

clock and tower, to be installed in the local school house.

(The ballroom is completed now.)

Several unusual markings were discovered imprinted / or worn on the floor.

One set of markings, is of particular interest.. A half - horse shoe impression

8 feet long, like a railroad track, leading to an open doorway...perhaps, an old

beer-wine barrel-rolling track? Other impressions, appear to show where a large, heavy piece

of furnishing/ cabinetry lay, against the wall, with about four feet between the wall

and the cabinet. We believe this may have been the original location

of the courtesy bar, or (check in desk) located at the stair well main door.....

Copies of old newspapers were found inside the wall, but they were much later, due

to their content..."Douglas McArthur vowed to remain in occupied Japan till

the work is finished" read the headlines. They were probably published in the 1945-46.

This paper was jammed in between the false wall, and the side

wall to keep cold air from entering the room being heated.


March 2009

The picture above shows several years examples of wallpaper used in the Ballroom.

The post Victorian flowered pattern, has metallic - accompanied stripes,

and is probably dated around the early 1900s. The Tan colored paper,

with the lighter square borders, called "striping" was popular during the late 1890s.

This pattern was duplicated the entire length of the ballroom, and showed an

incredible attention to detail. Further below this paper, in small remaining sections,

was we believe the original paper, which was a white/ cream colored paper,

with geometric designs resembling the columns in front of the US White House,

in Washington DC. The paper had blue accents, and red dots through out,

with silver lines painted around the designs. As the construction of the hotel in the

1860s probably did NOT include papering, but paint, this "white house paper"

is probably early 1880s.

It is this grand Victorian time line that the hotel will be restored.

Due to the cracks ,and plaster falling off, the walls have been completely repaired.

The old false wall, is being dismantled, piece by numbered piece, to be archived and stored.

Notice the blue painted wainscoting, which was covered up by the baseboard, is the original color

of the wainscoting. On the exposed boards, the old practice of "graining" was used, in which

the artists would use a combination of paints, and tools such as, feathers, combs, and sometime

their finger, to simulate wood graining on the wood work. Eventually, this popular

look would go out of style, and be replaced by the end of the 1890s, by paint, once again.

While checking plumbing under the bar, old bottles were discovered, several local

Hermann beer bottles, circa 1880s, and several broken shot glasses, and brandy long

stemmed glasses. We now have a good idea of what kind of glassware the hotel offered its

guest! In addition, a medicinal bottle, "Dr. McCleans BLOOD PURIFIER"

was discovered, probably to act as a chaser to that local beer..

Also, after the old carpet and plywood was removed to expose the old wood floors,

the original marks where the old saloon bar and bar-back stood....

complete with lead drain pipe, used to drain off the melted ice from the coolers!!

Old porcelin signs were discovered under the flooring, to cover holes in the floor.

 

 

While repairing the floor in the ballroom, we discovered the secret entrance

to the "Speak Easy" that was used during Prohibition as quite a luxury for the hotel guests.

**Roll your mouse over the picture to see the floor as it appears now!

 

While repairing the old saloon, we discovered another FALSE WALL,

located behind the old bar back in the lobby! When removed,

it was discovered that the original hotel had a pass through to the saloon,

to the ballroom, complete with a curtain.

(the old brass curtain rod holder was sealed up in the wall)

Here is the false wall opened up back to its original style!

138 Shutters to Paint !!

 

Finally! All the tile has been removed and then could refinish the wood flooring in the ball room.

***run your mouse over the picture above to see an old picture of this area***

Newspapers were discovered, dating the areas the paper was "jammed" into.

The old pot-bellied stove piped chimneys flus contained proof of when the "modern"

steam heat was installed. Two papers, one written entirely in German, The "Mississippi Blatter",

published on Sunday, October 11th 1911. This showed when the new steam heat was installed,

getting ready for one of those rough Missouri winters. It was there, stuffed

in the flu, that the little "time capsule" remained for 98 years.

March 2010- Here is the last photo of the kitchen, circa 1920.

The kitchen has been restored back to the 1880 time frame, complete with the original

tables used in the kitchen at that time. The large original stoves have been

faithfully restored and are in operating condition. Come by and see

the restored kitchen, just as they did all those years ago!

March 2010- the 1920s cabinets, are being removed in this picture.

The removed cabnets showed the areas where board shelving was nailed

to the wall. On these shelves, pots and pans hung, ready for use.

March 2010- this photo shows the wild 1950s color scheme, pink walls,

with a marbled pink formica top- covering the old 1920s counters.

Here is a close color scheme of the trim and wall colors for the late 1860s.

This dark, almost olive paint was popular, and was used in the pantry and the kitchen.

The paint would darken significantly due to smoke and soot and cooking throughout the years.

It was the 1880s, that brought a new idea of “cleanliness” to kitchens and

bathrooms alike… each getting a coat of white paint…

While repairing the old rotten floor joists, many “treats” were discovered.

This fine example, a French perfume bottle from the 1870s, was tossed under the old flooring.

Perhaps an “end of the work day” sprucing up, before a night of courting?

A morphine bottle

This picture is of several pieces of fine china found under several sections of flooring.

The collection consisted of old English ware, from the 1860s to the early 1900s.

Brandy glasses, salts, dishes, sugar bowls, mixing bowls, were all discovered. Many of the

old company names, now all gone were identified. This tells us what kind of dishware the hotel

uses throughout the ages. Many of the “nicer” pieces were flung far under the floorboards,

apparently in an attempt to hide the loss from the proprietor of the time.

Unbeknownst to these unfortunates that broke the rare old china, was the fact that they

were simply, slowly, making the kitchens very own time capsule…for the new

owners to discover 130 years later.

Many hours of carefully sifting through the dirt and crawling in tight spots.

CONTACT US