The Wau Gwin Gwin Hotel was built in 1904 overlooking the waterfall where Phelps Creek joins the Columbia River. It had twenty rooms, and served guests until 1921, when it was torn down to allow construction of the Columbia Gorge Hotel.
I know that they would go pick up their guests that came up river at the train station, probably with buggies and horses much like these. The waterfalls is called Wau-Gwin-Gwin to this day.
Charlott on 31st August 2011 @ 7:06am
perhaps a game of croquet after tea...
interesting that current spelling is "wah" gwin gwin
spinsur on 31st August 2011 @ 7:06am
This falls is the third highest waterfall in the Gorge. It falls about 208 feet. Wau-Gwin-Gwin is the local Indian name meaning "rushing water" and it does just that down through there.
Charlott on 31st August 2011 @ 7:10am
I am curious about why the hotel was built there.
Was it simply for the view?
The train station is not close. There was no highway at the time.
Was there a settlement there?
Maybe the trail down the gorge went through this area?
l.e. on 31st August 2011 @ 7:42am
the county road was just to the south, wasco county, in the late 1880's, near where country club is today. road, view, and phelps creek = hotel!
spinsur on 31st August 2011 @ 7:58am
Wau-gwin-gwin is "Like honey from the sky"....does the CGorge Hotel still do that! What a photo this is, history says that Bobby Rand built this hotel in 1904, and in 1905 he built my home.......yes on Rand Rd named after the same(actually his son). This same photo appears on the nwest wall of the Charburger in HRiver. The clapboard siding, trim, railings, windows, etc in this photo mirror those on my home. Bobby needed a place to rest his hat other than the hotel!......
James Holloway on 31st August 2011 @ 10:07am
hmm, I've never heard the "like honey from the sky" interpretation. McArthur, in Oregon Geographic Names, (who incidentally, worked in the hood river area for pacific power way back when) notes the rushing water translation, and the second "gwin" adds emphasis in the native language. never-the-less, good stuff James.
spinsur on 31st August 2011 @ 10:29am
'Like honey from the sky" was a phrase CGHotel servers used in the eighties somehow referencing the beautiful waterfalls outside...as they poured some substance(honey?) onto some food(a hot roll?)....
James Holloway on 31st August 2011 @ 9:39pm
My great-grandfather was fluent in the area Indian languages and he had it written down as rushing water. I think the other was something that was coined by early Columbia Gorge Hotel.
Charlott on 1st September 2011 @ 6:55am
To the left of the hotel there was and still is a high pile of rocks (now it has a white swing on it.) There was another building on top of those rocks that housed staff that apparently lived on site. Also there was a "putt-putt" type golf course and quite possibly a horse shoe pit.
Charlott on 8th September 2011 @ 5:43pm
...what a nice stroll down memory lane. Way ta go Connie and gang.
Phil Jensen on 19th October 2011 @ 9:55pm