In 1928 fire destroyed the Nelson House, a hotel built on this site in 1880. Recognizing the need for a “modern and distinctive hotel” for travelers, according to the Ishpeming Iron Ore (March 14, 1931), mining company visitors, and the community, S. R. Elliott, manager of mines for the Cleveland-Cliffs Iron (CCI) Mining Company, spearheaded the organization of the Ishpeming Hotel Company. Its major shareholders were CCI and its president, William G. Mather (1857–1951), but more than 300 Ishpeming residents also held shares. The company erected this large, fireproof Colonial Revival inn to the plans of a Boston architect. The four-story inn was built of steel, concrete, and red brick. A two-story balustraded portico runs along the front of the inn. Among its important public rooms are a pine-paneled main lobby with a large open fireplace, a men's clubroom, and a sunken dining room. It has forty-seven rooms and three apartments. All were furnished with early American furniture from Carson, Pirie and Scott of Chicago. Manning landscaped the south sloping site with a rock garden wall, terrace, elms, and large spruce. In 2010 the city hopes to reactivate plans of Mather Inn Enterprises that were halted the previous year to renovate the inn with apartments, meeting and banquet rooms, and offices.
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The Mather Inn
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