Bitter cold was no deterrent in March 1891 as a jubilant, elegantly attired crowd of 500 gathered to celebrate the opening of Bozeman’s first-class hotel. Its completion marked the town’s coming of age and added a decidedly urban formality to what was still a rural community. Hoping their town would become the state capital in the 1892 statewide election, citizens raised $20,000 and an optimistic group of Boston capitalists put up $100,000 to construct the 136-room hotel. George Hancock designed the vernacular Romanesque style building. The arched windows, elaborate stained glass, and five-story turreted bay graced an unpaved Main Street. Inside, modern amenities included steam heat, fire escapes, call bells, a formal dining room, an elevator, and a ladies’ parlor. Although the town lost its capital bid, the fine hotel long reflected the winning enthusiasm of Bozeman’s avid supporters. Renovation in 1974 changed the interior, but a carved stair, part of the pressed-tin lobby ceiling, and several ornate cast-iron columns remain to document the grandeur of this landmark hotel.