Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel

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Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel
Sir-Walter-Raleigh-Hotel-20080321.jpeg
Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel
Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel is located in North Carolina
Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel
Location Raleigh, North Carolina
Coordinates 35°45′46″N 78°38′38″W / 35.76278°N 78.64389°W / 35.76278; -78.64389Coordinates: 35°45′46″N 78°38′38″W / 35.76278°N 78.64389°W / 35.76278; -78.64389
Area less than one acre
Architect Griffin,B.H./Salter,J.A.
Architectural style No Style Listed
Governing body Private
Part of Fayetteville Street Historic District
NRHP Reference # 78001980[1]
Added to NRHP August 11, 1978

The Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel is the oldest surviving hotel building in Raleigh, North Carolina. Constructed between 1923 and 1924 on Fayetteville Street and named after Sir Walter Raleigh, the hotel was nicknamed North Carolina’s “third house of government,” due to its location and being a focal point for state political activity until the 1960s. The Sir Walter Raleigh is typical of hotels of the 1920s. It is a 10-story imposing L-shaped building primarily made of brick, with classical stone ornamentation at the street and roof levels. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on August 11, 1978.[1]

History[edit]

The Capital Construction Company was formed in 1923 to build a hotel in Raleigh to attract convention traffic that had been going to Greensboro and Durham. In January 1924, the hotel opened and at the time, the Sir Walter was the largest building in the southern portion of Raleigh's business district. The hotel became the unofficial headquarters of the North Carolina Democratic Party, at the time the dominant political force in the state. By 1925, the Sir Walter was home to over 80 percent of the state legislature. In addition to legislators, the hotel was home to lobbyists, aides, jurors, newspapermen, businessmen and other influential individuals over the next three decades.

The Great Depression forced the building’s owners into bankruptcy in 1934. The hotel was leased to the North State Hotel Company in 1935 and fully renovated. After the company added 50 rooms in 1938, the hotel became the largest in the state and gave the Sir Walter a reputation as one of North Carolina’s top convention hotels.

During the 1960s, suburban motel development, the completion of the new state Legislative Building, and general downtown decline affected the hotel's business. In 1967, John A. Williams, owner of the Sir Walter Hotel, donated the Hotel to the North Carolina State University Foundation.[2] The $2 million hotel continued operating under the same management and employees. Profits from the hotel went to support student scholarships and financial aid.[3] In 1968 the hotel joined the Sheraton Inn chains and was renamed the Sheraton-Sir Walter Hotel.[4] In 1969, the university sold the hotel to Plaza Associates for $1.84 million.[5]

The hotel closed and the building was converted into 140 apartments for seniors in the late 1970s.[6] The Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel is now a designated Raleigh Historic Landmark.[7]

See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2010-07-09. 
  2. ^ "NCSU Foundation". 
  3. ^ Technician (NCSU Libraries Special Collections Research Center, Raleigh, NC). North Carolina State University. 9 December 1966. 
  4. ^ Technician (NCSU Libraries Special Collections Research Center, Raleigh, NC). North Carolina State University. 16 February 1968. 
  5. ^ Technician (NCSU Libraries Special Collections Research Center, Raleigh, NC). North Carolina State University. 1 April 1969. 
  6. ^ Sir Walter Hotel Now Used For Apartments May Return As Hotel :: WRAL.com
  7. ^ Sir Walter Raleigh Hotel- Raleigh: A Capital City: A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary

External links[edit]