Lower South Hotel

exterior of the lower south hotel
Exterior of the Lower South Hotel in South Amana, Iowa

Photo courtesy of the Amana Heritage Society

Quick Facts

Location:
410 P Street, South Amana IA
Significance:
Lodging
Designation:
National Historic Landmark
OPEN TO PUBLIC:
No

The Amana Colonies have always been a popular tourist spot, even before the Reorganization of 1932. Visitors came to the Amana Colonies out of curiosity about the way of life here, as well as for their manufactured goods. The train, and later the automobile, greatly increased the number of visitors to the Amana Colonies. In order to accommodate the needs of travelers and businessmen, the Amana Society established several hotels, including this one.

 

All Amana Colony buildings were similar, thus hotels could be easily converted into residential dwellings. This is what happened to the Lower South Hotel after the Great Change. Both the wooden and brick portions of the building, like all Amana Colony dwellings, had a gable roof and nine-over-six windows. An exterior feature of many houses were trellises--simple wooden latticework nailed to houses as vine supports. The trellises usually extended from the ground to the first floor windows. They protected the mortar of brick and stone houses from cracking caused by intruding vines and allowed moisture to evaporate from the building surface.