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Thread: The Old Crawford House Hotel

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    Default The Old Crawford House Hotel

    I am a descendant of the Barron family who purchased the Crawford House in 1870, from the people who had purchased it from Abel Crawford's son Tom. It has been 32 years now since the old girl was set afire, I believe to disway the cost of tearing it down. My relatives were Asa T. and Oscar F. Barron, who came from Quechee, Hartford Vermont in 1868. That same year they built the famed Twin Mountain House, and two years later aquired Crawford and Fabyan House. They would come to lease the first Summit House (1873-1908), as well as the Mt. Pleasant House, which stood on a rise directly across from the entrance to the present jewel, the Mt ewashington Hotel. I was born 4 years after Crawford House was lost to fire, so obviously I never saw it, though I feel a kinship to it just the same. I have collected a fine group of items from all of the Barron hotels and others of note in the area. I have leafed through register books from Crawford House, and am amazed to see the names of the people who stayed there. They were Presidents, poets, Governors, and every day people. I have always felt that it was a travesty to let the Crawford House fall into ruins, and eventualy burned. She was in my opinion the Gem of the white mountains. The hotel was the second one on that spot, as the first one also burned in 1859, only a few months later Col. Cyrus Eastman of Littleton built the second and last Crawford House. It stood for 118 years through the Notch winds and driving snow, and rode out a few hurricanes mostly unscathed. The place was managed for many years by Cordeanio Merrill, who endeared himself to thousands of his guests. In 1908 Mr. Merrill left the Hotel for the last time, as he was Ill, and the crowd that came to see him off at the Station, consisted of his Guests and his Help. There was scarcely a dry eye in the crowd as the old man left the mountains, where he had spent the last 40 years for the last time. After Merrills death in 1908, Col. William A Barron owned and managed the place until 1948, when the Barron's sold the hotels after 80 years of ownership. Col. Barron lived to be 96 years old, passing away in Massachusetts in 1964. I am glad none of them lived to see the place fall apart, and I hope that the Mt washington will never share the same fate. Tangible pieces of our past can not be recovered once gone, so I hope they will be treated with more respect then was shown Crawford House in 1977. Take care, and maybe we'll meet among the clouds some time.

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    You are absolutely right. Too often, in our haste to move ahead, we let the grand old things go by the wayside. Then, all that remains are usually only a few photographs.
    Bob

    I never want to see a day
    That's over forty degrees
    I'd rather have it thirty,
    Twenty, ten, five and let it freeeeEEEEEEeeze!

    My Seek the Peak 2014 Photo Set

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    Default The Crawford House Hotel

    Well said!

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    I was intrigued with your story, and as a result, set out to find a few photos of the Crawford House Hotel to see what it looked like. There wasn't much available on the Internet that I could find. What I did, are listed below. She looks like she was a really nice grand old hotel. After looking at them, I realized what a nice time period that must have been to visit the White Mountains.

    http://www.imagesofthepastgallery.co...Mt/c-wtmts.htm

    http://www.familystacks.com/family/Crawford.htm

    https://www.nhhistory.org/popresorts.html

    http://www.linngroveiowa.org/CrawfordNotchNH.jpg
    Last edited by Snow Miser; 09-06-2009 at 07:57 PM.
    Bob

    I never want to see a day
    That's over forty degrees
    I'd rather have it thirty,
    Twenty, ten, five and let it freeeeEEEEEEeeze!

    My Seek the Peak 2014 Photo Set

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    Hello,
    I apreciate your interest, and also the images you sent of the place. It was a cool era, back in the 1880's to the early 20th century, when Grand Hotels were in their prime. I have a great picture of Col. William A. Barron, standing near the port cociere, at the Crawford House in 1930. Crawfords has always intrigued me, and I go every summer with my son to the place where it once stood.There is an old Carriage House still extant, which was built for the original hotel about 1860. Other than the Carriage House, only a few small out buildings remain. I will tell you though, the view has not changed over the last century, and what a beautiful place Crawford Notch is still. If I can help you with any info, or photos, please do not hesitate. The photo you sent me from nhhistory.org, with the men on the Burros/Donkeys is great, the man in the lite colored suit and hat, in the center of the picture, is Col. William A. Barron, who was the middle son of my great great Grandfather. Col. Billy as he was called, was the owner of Crawford House, as well as it's manager for half a century, after his dad died. He had the title of Colonel only because he served on some N.H. Governors staff in the 1890's. His son however was a Brigadier General during WWII, he was W.A.B. Jr, he retired as President of Gillette Safety Razor Co. Colonel William Barron Sr sold the Crawford House in 48', and he lived to be 96. He and his son General Barron died within 3 days of each other in October of 1964. That is probably more than you wanted to know, but once I start it is hard to stop. I thank you again for the photos, and have a great Labor Day.
    Last edited by asabarron; 09-07-2009 at 10:40 AM.

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    Thank you for the additional information. It's always nice to know some of the history behind places one likes to visit. Have a nice Labor Day too!
    Bob

    I never want to see a day
    That's over forty degrees
    I'd rather have it thirty,
    Twenty, ten, five and let it freeeeEEEEEEeeze!

    My Seek the Peak 2014 Photo Set

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    Default Crawford House Photos

    I just saw your thread about the Crawford House. You might want to take a look at our website WhiteMountainHistory.org where we have several early photos of the Crawford House, the auction and the fire that destroyed the building. There is also information on the family and the early turnpikes in the Crawford Notch area.

    http://whitemountainhistory.org/

    Enjoy and let us know what you think. Always looking for additional vintage photos and history we might have missed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whitemountainhistory.org View Post
    I just saw your thread about the Crawford House. You might want to take a look at our website WhiteMountainHistory.org where we have several early photos of the Crawford House, the auction and the fire that destroyed the building. There is also information on the family and the early turnpikes in the Crawford Notch area.

    http://whitemountainhistory.org/

    Enjoy and let us know what you think. Always looking for additional vintage photos and history we might have missed.
    I just caught your post, a month after you posted it. Do not know why I didn't see it earlier. I checked out your website and it's really nice. I never knew that so much information and so many old photos were available. The photo collection is huge. I looked at all of them and thought to myself, it's amazing to see all the old things we now hike over and drive over that have been covered up by time. Thanks for providing the website and sharing the link.
    Bob

    I never want to see a day
    That's over forty degrees
    I'd rather have it thirty,
    Twenty, ten, five and let it freeeeEEEEEEeeze!

    My Seek the Peak 2014 Photo Set

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