Southern Belle's History

History from a southern belle.

The Rawls Hotel: A Historical Beauty

Courtesy of the Rawls Hotel

Courtesy of the Rawls Hotel

Founded in 1903, the McGhee Hotel was a two story stucco building built across from the busy railroad of Enterprise, Alabama. The hotel was built by Captain Japheth Rawls and his wife Margaret, and it was the first hotel of Enterprise.

Japheth Rawls was a prominent businessman of Enterprise, owning a cotton gin as well as a turpentine plant.  Later, Rawls changed the name of the hotel to the Rawls Hotel and remodeled the outside to match his boasting personality.  After his death, Rawls left the hotel to Jesse Rawls and his wife whom also kept up the grandure of its beauty.

Over the years, the hotel has changed hands many times, but its beauty stands firm and is matched to no other in Enterprise.  Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980, the Rawls is still going strong as a productive societal landmark.  Its ballroom hosts the grandest of Enterprises weddings and a ball named for the hotel itsself. 

Perhaps the fame of the hotel does not come from its grandure and beauty, but from the ghosts that supposedly walk the halls.  A proud man, believed to be Captain Rawls himself has been known to oversee the events at the hotel as well as a governing lady, one would assume is Margaret.  It has been reported as well that children are heard in the halls close to the kitchen.

Rawls Hotel is engrained with deep history. It has stood the test of war and depression and is just as much a part of Enterprise as it was when it was a small railroad town along an unbeaten path.


May 14, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , ,

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