“My husband and I are history buffs and it was so encouraging to see someone restore this property. It is very impressive.”

Hotel

The Library at The Chamberlin Inn. Free Wi-Fi is available to all guests
In 1900, Agnes (Aggie) Chamberlin moved from Kansas to Cody and went to work for Buffalo Bill at the Cody Enterprise newspaper office. Across the street from that office was a sagebrush-covered vacant lot. This lot would eventually become the Chamberlin Hotel. In 1903, Agnes opened her first boarding house on that lot and later her husband Mark built a small brick office building, invented a dentist license, and began pulling teeth. The original building was gradually expanded as Aggie enlarged her boarding house. Over the next 14 years, several buildings were combined to create the Chamberlin Hotel. As a result, many of the interior walls of the hotel were brick. (During our recent renovation these walls and their secrets were uncovered and restored.)

Court House

The property was later expanded to include the original Cody Circuit Judge Court House, one of the oldest buildings in Cody. Currently displayed in the hotel’s conference room, is a 1910 photograph of Buffalo Bill and the newly elected Park County officers standing on the property outside the court house door.

Glory Days

During the 1920′s and 30′s, the Chamberlin Inn was the place to stay in Cody. Our guest registers display the signatures of numerous actors, authors, politicians, opera singers, movie stars, and tycoons. Names such as Ernest Hemingway, Marshall Fields, Larry Larom, Stanley, and Haliburton have been her guests.

Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway’s Signature in the Guest Registry at the Chamberlin Inn.

We found Ernest Hemingway’s signature in one of the Chamberlin’s original guest registers. After considerable research by one of our guests, who happened to be a Hemingway scholar, we found that in 1932, while staying at the Chamberlin Hotel, Ernest Hemingway had just completed the manuscript for “Death in the Afternoon”. After a few days of fishing the Clark’s Fork River he mailed the manuscript and several short stories to his publishers. Then he went back to fishing by day and swapping stories with the locals in the Irma Bar at night. We have restored his room to reflect his lifestyle.

Agnes Chamberlin

Aggie was a pillar of the community. Her hotel dining room hosted the first Cody Club Chamber meeting and she published its history in The Story of  The Cody Club 1900 – 1940. In 1926, she organized the first Buffalo Bill Memorial Association meeting in the hotel, where she was elected its first president. She also founded the Cody Women’s Club. An accomplished pianist, she chartered the Cody Music Club. She was instrumental in the building of the Methodist and Presbyterian churches and later donated land for the Cody Airport. Agnes lived to help dedicate KODI radio station just prior to her death in 1947.

Pawnee Hotel

Agnes sold the hotel in 1939 and the name was later changed to the Pawnee Hotel by Hattie and George Evans. The Hotel gradually decayed, almost into a state of disrepair, before it was purchased in 1974 by JoJean DeHony. Over the next 31 years, JoJean successfully operated the hotel, landscaped the adjoining vacant lot, and added baths to most rooms.

Chamberlin Inn

In October of 2005, the hotel again changed ownership and, as a tribute to Agnes Chamberlin, the name was changed back to the Chamberlin Inn.
New owners Ev and Susan Diehl, long time Cody residents, with the assistance of their daughters Kelly and Marcy and their families, and the contracting expertise of nephew H.R. Coe, began a complete restoration of the hotel and the surrounding properties.

ALLCody is a great source for additional information about Cody, Wyoming and Yellowstone National Park.