El Reno Hotel


The El Reno Hotel was built on the southwest corner of Wade and Choctaw in 1892 by J.M. Kemp. Later it was owned by John and Emma Kossuth who sold it to Mr. and Mrs. Hiram M. Foster in December 1901. It stayed in their family for over 80 years. Mrs. Foster operated it until 1959, then her son Clifford took over until 1964. At that time Mrs. Foster's daughter Catharine Lemon took over and operated it until it closed permanently in 1974. After closing the hotel, Catharine, with the help of her son Richard and daughter JoAnn, looked after the building and grounds until it was sold to Robert Osborn of the J&D Construction Company of Norman.

When the hotel was built there were no paved streets, electricity or modern plumbing. They used kerosene lamps and gas lights until electricity was available in the early 1900's. Water was carried in buckets and visitors had to use outside toilets or night vessels in their rooms.

There are 6 rooms downstairs and 10 rooms upstairs and before 1910 rooms rented for 50 cents to 75 cents per night. Later when meals were served in the dining room the cost was 25 cents per meal and later went up to 35 cents.

In January 1984, Mr. Robert Osborn and Associates donated the hotel structure to the Canadian County Historical Society so the property that was situated on Route 66 at Wade and Choctaw could be cleared for other interests. On February 16, 1984 the El Reno Hotel was moved to the Canadian Historical Society's Museum Complex and restored as much as possible to its original configuration.