The Lodge: 1900-1930

The First Lodge at Drakesbad Guest Ranch

black and white photo of a rustic cabin in the woods
1887--Edward Drake's first cabin in Hot Spring Valley
Roy Sifford reports that "Drake had been there [Hot Spring Valley] since '87 had a log cabin, built a bath house and built a good, new log cabin of some size which was used for many years for the office and headquarters" (Roy Sifford interviewed by Les Bodine n.d.). Roy Sifford places the cabin shown above "near the site of the present lodge. To the right would be up valley [west] - to the left down valley [east]" (Sifford Manuscript:1).


black and white photo of rustic cabin in woods
1902--Drake's "New Log Cabin" showing south end of the lodge
On June the 20th, 1900, the Siffords' "took possession of Hot Spring Valley, the beautiful log house that Drake had made, the bath house, a barn and that possible meadow land" (Roy Sifford interviewed by Les Bodine, 9 Oct 1984). Both the lodge and the smaller structure on the left were built by Drake.
Annie Bidwell on porch of lodge and the lodge in 1907
(Left) Annie K. Bidwell (in hat) on porch. She visited in 1901 and 1904    (Right) Lodge in 1907
The lodge faced generally to the east and was fronted with a covered porch. There was another covered porch on the south end of the building, and a fireplace and flue at the north end. The west (rear) of the building was an unbroken wall without windows or doors and lacked a porch or overhang. Sifford states that the large pipe that served as the fireplace flue was part of a mining flume from the Dutch Hill mine at Seneca (Sifford Manuscript: 6a.). The south porch contained a bench and wash basins for family and guests to wash up before meals.
two black and white photos of rustic Drakesbad Lodge circa early 1900
(Left) 1907  The Leichters   (Right) Lodge n.d.
1910--Standing on porch L-R  Ida May, Pearl, and Roy.  Alex at far right black and white photo
1910--Standing on porch L-R  Ida May, Pearl, and Roy.  Alex at far right

Susan Watson

In 1912 the Siffords formed the Drakes Spring Company and used the funds obtained from investors to begin a number of improvements that included the construction of a kitchen and dining room, a barn, the rock and cement pool, 20 wooden tent platforms, and completion of the bridge over Warner Creek.
example of Drakes Springs 1913 camping permit and b/w photo of Glen French in tent
(Left) 1913 Camping permit  (Right) Glen French in his tent

Last updated: February 28, 2015

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