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The LeClaire house Hotel

The LeClaire House Hotel

Built in 1839 at the northeast corner of Second and Main Streets, the LeClaire House Hotel for 20 years prior to the Civil War was a northern resort spot for southerners.  Known for providing first class dining and proximity to hunting, fishing, and boating, it continued to exist as a hotel until it was demolished in 1910.  A Scots stonemason, Alexander Brownlie, was responsible for the stone edifice work on this building.  Brownlie was born in Scotland in 1805.  Between 1826 and 1838 he lived in Canada where he farmed for a time and went to work on the Rideau Canal as a stonemason.  He was part of the crew shaping the giant stones used in building the lower lock at Smiths Falls.  He also worked on Ottawa’s Parliament Building.  Brownlie left Canada for Iowa in 1838, settling in Long Grove.  He died in 1889 in Brooklyn, Iowa, and is buried in Long Grove near his sod house that still stands.


 Sponsored by The Riverboat Development Authority and The Celtic Heritage Trail


Submitted by

Bryan Arnold


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