ebook  History of Watertown, Wisconsin


Powers Inn

Watertown Inn

Elias Inn Supper Club

200 North Second

Built in 1933 (1953 city assessor notation)






Watertown. Wis. -- A five story modern hotel, one block from Main street, will be added to Watertown's downtown section and work on the structure, which will be the tallest in the city, will begin before winter, it was announced by J. S. Miller and M. E. Blumenfeld of Madison, who were in the city conferring with Watertown business men regarding the project.


The project is backed by the Wisconsin Hotel company and Watertown will not be asked to subscribe stock or bonds or give a single penny toward the building of the hotel.


The hotel, which is to be known as the Hotel Watertown, will be erected on North Second street, directly across from the post office on the property now owned by the widow of the late Dr. Carl R. Feld, formerly city health commissioner here.  It will contain eighty-eight rooms and consist of five stories and basement.  It will be constructed of Watertown brick and as far as possible will be built by home labor.


The site for the hotel is one of the best in the city.  It gives ample space for the parking of automobiles and is centrally located.  While off the main business streets it will be a quiet place as far as streetcar traffic concerned and will be doubly comfortable for patrons.      Wire story article of 10 15 1923



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WDTimes, 10 15 1923


Badger Hotel Co. Back of Project for Watertown


A new hotel is assured Watertown and work on its construction will begin this fall, according to J. S. Miller of Madison, member of the J. S. Miller Realty Co., and M. F. Blumenfeld of Madison, who were in the city today conferring with Watertown business men in connection with the plans for its construction.


The project is backed by the Wisconsin Hotel company and the projectors claim that no better site for a first-class hotel exists in southern Wisconsin than Watertown, which with its fine railroad facilities and newly constructed state trunk highways in the center of a vase and rich country.


Mr. Blumenfeld has given the project attention for the past eighteen months and it is in great measure due to his efforts that Watertown was selected for the site of this hotel.


The hotel will be erected on the property owned by Mrs. Bertha Feld on the northwest corner of North Second Street where it intersects Madison Street, and will be 66 ˝ x 108 feet in dimension.  It will contain 88 rooms and be constructed of Watertown brick with Bedford stone trimmings and will be strictly modern throughout, consisting of five stories and a basement.


It will be known as Hotel Watertown, and the preliminary blue prints together with a sketch were shown today at the office of C. R. Blumenfeld.


The work of building, according to Mr. Miller, will start this fall and will be pushed to rapid completion. 


Watertown labor and materials will be used wherever it is possible to obtain them.


The hotel is being financed by the Badger Hotel Co. and Watertown will not be asked to subscribe stock or bonds unless they wish to do so, it is said.


The site selected will give adequate facilities for the parking of cars and allowance of daylight from all sided of the hotel.


When the final blue prints are made a cut of the new structure together with detailed plans for the building will be published.




02 13 1924 WDTimes



Asked to confirm the report that there was a revival of the hotel project as outlined to the local public last fall, Attorney Chas. R. Blumenfeld this morning stated:


''There is no revival of the project, for the reason that things have been going right along with the proposition and it is more than a project — it is a decided fact.  The delay in announcing a definite time to commence building operations has been due to the drawing up of plans, specifications and other details, but the building of an up-to-date hotel in Watertown is an assured fact.  No one in the city will be asked to donate towards the building.  Of course it is desirous that local people give their moral support and I expect that if they wish to buy stock in the enterprise they may do so, but the corporation which has retained me to handle the matter here is amply able to carry out its plans.  It is in the hotel business and the venture here is one of three hotels to be built by the company during the ensuing spring and summer.  One will be West Allis, one in Kenosha and the third in Watertown.  Plans and specifications of the new building are expected to arrive here today.”




09 20 1924 WDTimes



That Watertown’s modern hotel will be an accomplished fact within another year seems apparent according to an advertisement calling for bids for the construction of such a building, in another column of today’s paper.


The Badger Hotel company is behind the proposition and B. E. Buckman Co. of Madison, it is stated, will finance it.  A representative of the Buckman Co. said this morning:  “The company would like to get started on the construction work not later than October 15 and have the building finished not later than the first of June, 1925.


The site of the hotel has not been finally determined, abstracts of several properties being now in the hands of attorneys investigating the titles.  The building will cost, it is estimated, $275,000 and it will be called the Badger Hotel.




Anthony Earl

I'm going though the archives at work (Maas Brothers) and found this plan and specifications from 1923 for a very fancy 5-story hotel here in town that was never built, but was slated to be constructed on the northwest corner of Madison & Second. Within a decade, we built the Powers Inn (now Elias Inn) on that corner instead. The owner for the hotel project is listed as "The Badger Hotel Company" and it appears they were from Watertown, but I can't confirm that. I know it's a longshot since nobody alive would have direct knowledge of this proposed project, but curious if anybody out there may have heard of this and know anything more about it?










c.1933:  Watertown Inn

Powers Inn, Elias



Ck AIH records   and my architectural spiral


Building of in c.1933 was a Maas Bros project.




Watertown's famous Powers Inn will have a "kid sister" establishment at Pipersville within a week, Ray Powers announced here yesterday.  The new tavern, which will also bear the Powers name, famous as a hostelry and bar, will occupy the same building as that known to the Pipersville community for some time.


Extensive modernization and considerable redecorating has been necessary, delaying the opening of the new place a week, as it was originally scheduled to open last Sunday.  Among the many improvements and changes will be a new and attractive barroom and a commodious dance floor.  The Pipersville place will feature the same type of drinks and lunches as are now being served at the attractive Watertown Inn, which weekly attracts hundreds of out-of-town visitors to the city.


A feature recently introduced to the Powers Inn on Sunday nights is the weekly "Community Sing", in which guests of the Inn are invited to participate with the orchestra in popular and old time singing.  This feature of entertainment will be officially inaugurated Saturday night.  Souvenir books of songs will be distributed to all patrons.          Watertown Tribune, 07 11 1935





   Powers Inn / John Powers



FAIR DAY Held on N Second St. in area of Memorial Park and Powers Inn

     < Powers Inn in background






A picture containing sky, road, outdoor, house

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Lydia and Mike Sobol


Using an RDA loan and grant to bring the electrical and plumbing up to code, the Sobol’s saved enough of their own funds to completely gut the kitchen down to the studs.  Walls were redone, new stainless was put in, all the equipment is new.        WDTimes article 





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History of Watertown, Wisconsin