Washington Hotel and Café
516 E Main
1875 PURCHASED BY FRED KRONITZ
Conducted hotel for the next 27 years (1875-1902)
WDT obit, 07 09 1915: Fred Kronitz, a prominent citizen of Watertown for many years and a former resident of the town of Lebanon, died at his home in Watertown Tuesday evening, June 29, 1915, at the age of 69 years.
Mr. Kronitz was born in the town of Lebanon, March 29, 1846 and having lived in Dodge and Jefferson counties during his life of more than sixty-nine years, he was one of the oldest citizens of this section in point of residence. He was a son of the late Mr. and Mrs. Henry Kronitz of the town of Lebanon.
On June 23, 1870, Mr. Kronitz took Miss Minnie Gorder as his bride, the wedding taking place at the home of the bride’s parents in town of Waterloo. For the next year the young people resided in the town of Lebanon and spent four years on the old Gorder homestead in the town of Waterloo.
It was in October, 1875 that Mr. and Mrs. Kronitz moved to Watertown and purchased the Washington House, and Mr. Kronitz conducted a hotel at the present site, corner of Main and North Sixth streets for the next twenty-seven years, retiring thirteen years ago.
The surviving relatives are two sons and one daughter, the widow and one brother. The sons are Louis Kronitz and Henry W. Kronitz and the daughter is Mrs. Ida Nowack all of Watertown. The brother is Mr. Carl Kronitz. Six grandchildren also survive.
04 06 ADDITION TO HOTEL
Henry Kronitz, landlord of the Washington Hotel on Main Street, has razed the old frame building adjoining his hotel and will erect an addition to his hostelry. The new structure will be 24x32, two stories high. This part of the hotel will be fitted up for an office on the ground floor and the upper floor used for sleeping compartments. Modern improvements will be put into the entire building. The cost is anticipated to be about $4500. Steam heat and electric lighting will be put in the entire building. — The rapidly increasing patronage of this popular hotel makes these improvements necessary.
10 06 HUB FOR THE ONION SHIPMENTS
Some of Watertown's parking restriction involving trucks, notable in the Old Armory area, are tending to threaten local business. The issue came into the open when it was announced that a large fleet of trucks will be operating out of the city in the next three months as a result of the “onion kings” - Brand Bros. Produce Co. of Atlanta, Ga., again setting up their headquarters here at the Hotel Washington. Brand Bros. are making this the hub of the onion shipments from Wisconsin and they will be shipping an estimated 1,000 carloads of onions from here to all parts of the nation.
02 13 INTEREST IN HOTEL OFFER
An Oconomowoc promotion group, representing Oconomowoc business men, is interested in a new hotel offer recently made in Watertown to the city of Watertown and if this city does not act in the matter there is a strong possibility that Oconomowoc may land the new hotel facility. Fred Roberts, owner and operator of the Hotel Washington, who brought the hotel matter to the attention of Watertown officials and business men last year, was in Oconomowoc yesterday afternoon and met with the interested group there. He reports that there is great interest in the hotel plans and that every effort is to be made to secure a site suitable for the hotel. WDT
10 04 FRED ROBERTS OWNER
Announcement was made today by Fred Roberts that he has acquired ownership of the Hotel Washington Building at 516 Main Street. The hotel has been operated for many years by Hotel Washington, Inc., a corporation which had been owned by the Roberts interests until January, 1962 at which time Mr. and Mrs. Everett C. Curtiss of Virginia, Minn., acquired the corporation and operated the hotel until Oct. 1 of this year. They have returned to Minnesota. WDT
02 26 SALE OF THE WASHINGTON INN
Announcement is made today of the sale of the Washington Inn, Main and North Sixth Streets, a corporation headed by Daniel Edward Bellack of Chicago and Antioch, Il. The corporation is the Washington Inn Corporation of Watertown. The purchase was made from Fred Roberts, who owns and operates the inn. Roberts took over the operation of the hotel in October of 1964 form Mr. and Mrs. Everett C. Curtis of Virginia, Minn., who had taken over from Roberts in January of 1962. Extensive improvements will be made at the inn. A meeting or banquet hall which will accommodate 100 persons is being arranged on the first floor to the west. The present dining room is being enlarged, and changes will be made in the bar room. WDT
08 18 SALE OF THE WASHINGTON INN
Several important changes in the operation of the Washington Inn at 516 Main Street were announced today by Dan Bellack, head of Washington Inn, Inc., which purchased the hotel from Col. Fred N. Roberts last winter. The changes will become effective on Monday. Mr. and Mrs. Jack Biefeld will assume operation and management of the barroom, Mrs. Darlene Biefeld having been associated with the hotel for many years as a waitress and who is known to have the hotel’s clientele as a most efficient and friendly person. Irma Jergins, also with the hotel for many years, will serve as the hotel operator. Col. Roberts, his wife and their daughter, Barbara, will leave shortly for Phoenix, Ariz., where they plan to make their home. The daughter is enrolled as a student at the University of Arizona. WDT
04 14 FIRE AT HOTEL
Officer’s quick action helps residents get out during fire
No one was injured in a small fire at the Washington Inn, 516 E. Main St. Watertown Police Officer Scott Kind was at the hotel at approximately 10 p.m. doing a verification check at the inn when he smelled smoke in the building, followed the smoke to a room that was unoccupied and alerted the fire department and other police officers and began an evacuation.
The building did not have a fire alarm system; there was a smoke detector in the room where the fire began, but it was not working at the time of the fire. A smoke detector in the hallway was working. It is believed that the fire was started by a candle on the floor next to the sofa in the room. Emergency officials also evacuated the Firecracker Pub which shares a building with the Washington Inn.
History of Watertown, Wisconsin