Rookwood Hotel

Butte National Historic Landmark District

James Pratt, proprietor of the Red Boot and Shoe Company, spent $30,000 on the construction of this hotel/rooming house in 1912. The shoe company occupied the ground floor space through the 1930s. Large display windows and a Tudor-arched entry, designed to entice customers and guests, enhance the ground floor. Green tile embellishes the façade and caps the unique copper-clad cornice. Inside, a wrought iron staircase with marble treads leads down to the hotel lobby. Marble wainscoting and a marble floor recall its once-elegant hospitality. The lodging house above, renamed the La Salle Hotel in 1938, had more than forty-five rooms. During Prohibition in the late 1910s and 1920s, the hotel’s thirty working-class lodgers perhaps enjoyed the hidden bar tucked beneath the sidewalk. Discovered during cleanup of the building, the clandestine establishment had all the trappings of a period speakeasy including a secret entry and two-way mirror. The room continues the architectural motif with decorative Tudor arches spanning the ceiling. Elaborate support columns sporting carved griffins, terrazzo flooring, dark hardwood wainscoting, and marble trim expose a piece of Butte’s once-spirited underground.

Images

Rookwood Hotel
Rookwood Hotel Rookwood Hotel (PAc 91-51 B1 RollCBD12 F22). Front to side view of the building, facing east to southeast near the corner of North Main Street and East Broadway Street. B&W. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office from the Photograph Archives at the Montana Historical Society Creator: Photographer unidentified Date: 1985

Location

24-26 North Main Street, Butte, Montana | Private

Metadata

The Montana National Register Sign Program, “Rookwood Hotel,” Story of Butte, accessed April 14, 2024, https://storyofbutte.org/items/show/1968.