Northern Hotel

Also known as:  Gorden Hotel

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Hotel Northern was built by Martin L. Gordon in 1889 and run under his management for two years under the name of “Hotel Gordon.”

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In 1892 the house passed into the hands of Trepanier & Gotzian and was leased to Colonel C. B. Ingalls, who refurnished the house complete and named it the Hotel Northern.  Under the popular management of Colonel Ingalls the house won wide and favorable reputation as a strictly first class hotel.  The present owner and proprietor, Herbert N. Wells [Hugh N. Wells], purchased the furniture of the Ingalls estate in October, 1893, and bought the real estate in 1901.  The Hotel Northern is a brick building, three stories and basement.  Has gas and electric lights, steam heat and baths, is conveniently situated for business and just across the street from the proposed site of the Union depot.  Mr. Wells is a native of Faribault, Minn., came to Crookston in August, 1881, removing to Grand Forks in 1884, has been in the hotel business for more than twenty-five years.  (History of the Red River Valley Past and Present, Volume II, C. F. Cooper & Company, Chicago, 1909)


The Hotel Northern is a very commodious structure, as shown in the engraving, and has achieved under the management of the present proprietor, Mr. H. N. Wells, a very enviable popularity with the traveling public.  The Northern is not only a favorite stopping place with the traveling fraternity, but with the business men and others from all over North Dakota and adjacent states, who have occasion to visit Grand Forks.  The Northern is a substantial three story and basement brick building, heated throughout by steam and equipped with every desirable modern convenience.  On the first floor is the lobby, a large and well lighted room, with the clerk’s offices, coat room, etc., in the rear.  Adjoining is the reading and writing room with every modern convenience for the use of guests.  The dining room is to the left of the main entrance and is one of the largest in the northwest.  From the main entrance a broad and easy stairway leads to the second floor where a handsome suite of reception rooms, ladies’ parlor, private parlors, sleeping apartments, etc., are situated.  The guests’ rooms occupying the remainder of the second and third floors are all large and well lighted apartments, handsomely carpeted and furnished in a superior manner.  The dining room service is superb and the menu includes the best there is.  Mr. Wells, the proprietor, gives every department his personal supervision and is ably seconded in his efforts to please his guests by Chief Clerk Miller.  The Northern is very conveniently located within one block of the Great Northern depot, the post office, land office, opera house, court house, and other public buildings.  Free busses from the hotel meet all trains.  (City of Grand Forks Illustrated, William L. Dudley, The Herald, Printers and Binders, Grand Forks, 1897, Page 64)


Hotel Northern

 A Large, Convenient, and Comfortable Travelers’ Home

The Hotel Northern is a handsome and commodious three story brick structure at the corner of Kittson avenue and Fifth street, within a block of the postoffice, and but little over a block from the Great Northern depot.  The hotel has been under the management of H. N. Wells, its present proprietor, for a number of years and under his management it has acquired a reputation which has at all times and is all seasons kept the house well filled with guests.

The dining room and office are on the ground floor both being spacious and well lighted.  Large, well furnished parlors are on the second floor, the remaining space being occupied by guest chambers which are always well kept and ready for the accommodation of transient or permanent guests.

The table service at the Northern can not be excelled anywhere.  Mr. Wells attends in person to the marketing for the house and his guests may always rest assured that they are supplied with the best of everything obtainable.  Mr. Wells has been in the hotel business since boyhood and has no warmer friends than the men who knew him 18 years ago as clerk in the Commercial in Crookston, then under the regime of Col. Topping.  He also served as clerk and manager for years under the late Col. Ingalls.

The Northern enjoys a large patronage from traveling men and its transient trade in very heavy.  (Grand Forks Herald, Tuesday Morning, June 27, 1899, Volume 18, Number 205, Page 14)


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