The Historic Black Hawk Hotel

By: Sydney McSwain

Figure #1 Caption: The exterior of the Black Hawk Hotel
Figure #1 Caption: The exterior of the Black Hawk Hotel

Figure #5 Caption: An unmissable sign right outside the front door of the hotel
Figure #5 Caption: An unmissable sign right outside the front door of the hotel

The Black Hawk Hotel is the longest continuously running hotel in the country. It was been listed in the national register of historic places. The Black Hawk first got its start in the early 1850’s. It was first known as the Winslow House, it first started as a stagecoach hotel a little ways away from Cedar Falls first mill race on the Cedar River. Later on, in the decade (1858) the hotel was renamed to The Western, during this time they constructed a fourth floor. The hotel also served its community during the Civil War. There was another name change in the 1860’s and it was called The Carter House, it was a successful until it was destroyed by a fire in the 1870’s. After the fire the hotel was reconstructed as a four story Second Empire architecture and it is what stands today. When it was reopened it was called the Davis House. In the mid 1880’s the ownership of the hotel went the Burr family and they renamed it to The Burr’s Hotel they ran the hotel until the early 1900’s. In 1914 a group of investors hired a local architect to redesign the old structure into what it is today, it was a mix of the Second Empire and Mission-style architecture. After the local architect John Ralston redesigned the structure The Black Hawk Hotel was born. 

 

Figure #4 Caption:  A tin Coffee and Spice co container turned into a mailbox/suggestion box
Figure #4 Caption: A tin Coffee and Spice co container turned into a mailbox/suggestion box

 As of the spring of 2018 the black hawk hotel has been run by a local family-run company called Eagle View Partners. They want to honor the rich history the hotel has and the impact and the significance it has had on the community. Much of the wanting to honor the history came from the hotels most recent owners Dan and Kathy Tindall, who dedicated more than 20 years of their lives to. The Eagle View Partners plan to focus on providing five-star service and amenities to their guests. The rebranding of the hotel that they want to achieve is that it starts with defining luxury as amalgam of historic charm and progressive amenities. The guests will still get to go to the same historic hotel they know but will be able to get more than they ever could. The Hotel has 28 historic guest rooms and 15 retro-modern motel rooms. The amenities that the hotel offers are they have local breakfast, Wi-Fi, pet-friendly, local coffee and tea, breakfast to-go and a fitness center. They will be getting more amenities soon some are a minibar, scratch cookies and weekend breakfast. 

 

Figure #2 Caption:  A bright red vintage couch in the lobby of the Black Hawk Hotel
Figure #2 Caption: A bright red vintage couch in the lobby of the Black Hawk Hotel

In an interview with Debbie Glenn a front desk worker who worked at the Black Hawk Hotel she shares her experiences she has had with the hotel. Debbie has worked at the Black Hawk for 11 years. Her favorite part of working at the hotel is being able to meet new people and being able to see and experience the changes the hotel goes though. The hardest thing about working at the hotel for Debbie was working third shift, which is a night shift from 10pm to 6am. Some history she knows about the hotel is that it had been a work in progress for about fifteen years.
 In another interview with Katie Block a chief housekeeper who has worked at the Black Hawk for eight years she tells about her time with hotel. Along with Debbie she also likes to meet new people and interact with them. During the interview when the question “What is the best thing about working at the hotel” Debbie shouted from across the room “Because her best friend works here!” Katie back in the day used to work at the restaurant that used to be in the hotel. She was telling about a time her grandmother ran away from her grandfather and in this story, she said that back then the hotel didn’t have bathrooms in the rooms. Instead they had bathrooms down the hall from the rooms that was a communal bathroom.
 The Black Hawk Hotel has such a great and rich history that everyone should know about. From the intricate architecture to the vintage style of the Hotel people from all around should come to visit it and learn about all the history it has to offer.

Figure #3: Vintage luggage set to help bring you back in time
Figure #3: Vintage luggage set to help bring you back in time

To book now visit: 

https://theblackhawkhotel.com/book-now/

 

 

Or call: (319)277-1161

 

 

 

Or go the hotel personally at: 115 Main Street, Cedar Falls, IA 50613