Interesting History of A Holyoke Hotel

by Laurel | March 6th, 2012

06 March 1921

Samosett House, Holyoke

Samosett House, Holyoke

Samosett House Transformed Into Funeral Parlor After Long Service.

The Samosett House was Holyoke’s first downtown hotel for when Crafts Tavern Hotel in city limits was at the height of its fame, there was no Holyoke and what is now the city was farming and pasture land. Just what year the Samosett house, which is not occupied by J. P. Hobert was built it not on record. It was said to have been built shortly after Holyoke got its start and long before the war which would place it between 1850 and 1851. It is mentioned in the Hampden Freeman, one of the “ancestors” of the Holyoke Transcript in 1851 and then had been in operation some time. One authority said that the house was erected soon after the second Holyoke dam was built, which would put it about 1850.

Corner of Dwight and Crescent

In the June 28, 1851 issue of the Hampden Freeman, a notice is given that William Marsh and Son have acquired the Samosett House, formerly operated by Robert G. marsh and it is stated that they intend to keep up its former fine reputation. The Holyoke House is noted as early as 1857 as at the the “corner” of Dwight street and Crescent street near the railroad station.

Popular with “Upper 10”

The Samosett house was the center for numerous banquets of the “upper 10” in the earlier days. According to the stories told there was a flow of something besides water, but at that time everybody drank, prohibition had not been though of, and the festivities with plenty of liquids were the usual thing. It is said that the late Judge Pearsons was in the Samosett house one night and not liking something that was said, pulled up the bar and threw it outdoors! As Judge Pearsons was a powerful man in his prime there is no reason for disbelieving the story.

On With The Dance

It is said that the dances of the older days, when dancing continued through the morning hours, were enlivened by dancers at the old Samosett and by not infrequent trips to the Samosett bar. In later years the house grew less reputable and finally lost all but a shred of its reputation of old days and acquired a new one the less said of which the better. Finally it passed into business hands and was renovated and now is an attractive business block. The change from a hotel to an undertaking establishment is rather violent, but the days have passed in which those who knew the Samosett House will care and the younger generation as a rule do not know that the Samosett house ever existed.

Edited and adapted from The Springfield Republican.

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