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"History of Eau Claire County Wisconsin, 1914, Past and Present"


Chapter  40 - Hotels of Eau Claire

Eau Claire House

(-as transcribed from pages 540 - 541)

The oldest is the Eau Claire House, located at the corner of South Barstow and Eau Claire Streets. The original structure was a frame building erected by Adin Randall in 1856. One historical account states the three lots were given Mr. Randall in 1856 for this express purpose by J. J. Reed, R. F. Wilson and William H. Gleason, but record of transfers does not verify this statement. The house erected by Mr. Randall contained nine sleeping rooms and was noted in its early days for the political and other meetings and festive gatherings held under its roof. At one time religious services were conducted in the hotel dining room, which was humorously designed as the "Pan and Kettle Church," owing to the clatter from the kitchen, where Sunday dinner was in preparation, being overheard by the worshipers, and it is feared taking their minds from things spiritual to things material.

About September 23, 1858, Levi Slingluff rented and took possession of the property. He had formerly been in the hotel business at Fountain City. His son was a partner and the management was under the name of Slingluff & Son. They retired from the business about May or June, 1865, and Robinson and Galloway became proprietors.

Mr. Slingluff engaged in the mercantile business and was elected County Treasurer.

Galloway and Robinson, in the fall of 1865, built an addition larger than the original building. It fronted 100 feet on Barstow street and was 34 feet deep. Their management of the house was short lived and in February, 1866, William Newton became the proprietor of the Eau Claire House. He operated the business very successfully until 1874, when he closed the house and leased the new building on the corner of Gibson and Farwell streets, which had been erected by Dr. W. T. Galloway. The name was transferred to the new location. In August, 1876, Mr. Newton returned to his own building and the property on the corner of Farwell and Gibson was renamed the "Galloway House." In 1879 Mr. Newton moved the frame portion of the Eau Claire House, selling it to Peter Hart. A brick building was erected in place of the old frame. Mr. Newton carried on the business until 1882 when he leased the premises to Foster Bros. They continued until 1887, when the management became Foster & Parkinson. Two years later Mr. Foster withdrew and Daniel McGillis became associated with Robert E. Parkinson in the business.

Several years later Mr. McGillis withdrew and since then Mr. Parkinson has been the sole proprietor.

On the death of Mr. Newton the premises passed to his estate. On April 15, 1911, the heirs of the estate sold the fee to William H. Wolpert. Mr. Parkinson continued in the management of the hotel to which he held a lease.

On July 16, 1912, James T. Joyce bought the property from Mr. Wolpert and a short time thereafter sold it to Mr. Parkinson, who is now proprietor of the business as well as the real estate.


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