One of the many hotels that existed in St. Charles from the 1830s to 1910, the Howard House Hotel is one of the few that remains relatively intact. The north section, built in the 1840s by Joel Witherell, served as the original hotel. Later, Leonard and David Howard bought the building, raising its roof and adding the south section. Although the combination Federal and Greek Revival style building had a pillared porch, this no longer exists.
During its heyday, the hotel, which was owned by Leonard Howard, played host to holiday parties and military balls. Mrs. Lincoln stayed here for a time following the assasination of her husband in April, 1865. Under the alias of "Mrs. May," she often frequented the Howard home in search of spiritual guidance from Mrs. Howard.
Although the Howard House Hotel served as a hotel for many years, it has changed ownership many times and has served several other purposes as well. At various times in its history it has been known as the Mallory House, the Atwood Inn, and the Western Hotel. Later it was used as a paint shop, an overall factory, and a beehive factory. Most recently though, the old hotel has served as an apartment house.
Howard House Hotel - 1850
Howard House Hotel - 1966
photographs, see these sources,
more fully described in the Bibliography.
Then and Now Reflections of St. Charles p 92 Celebrating History p 40