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The Hotel Warren
by Lu Hickey

By Mrs. Rosa Howell Williams
The Liberal News Round About Correspondent
Early 1940's

There was no room for them at the Inn.

How many times have we read that statement and always have we seen the venerable Joseph anxiously waiting for the Innkeeper to bid him bring his wife in to shelter, when she, the Blessed Mother of our Lord, calmly waited outside, indifferent to the beauties of the valleys through which they had passed and the careless declaration of the Innkeeper.

Did she know the great significance of that refusal for admittance for shelter?  Perhaps not, but that little dark, uncomfortable inn has come down through the ages, taking only second place in our minds to the manger.   When we think of the one, perforce the thought of the other always intrudes.   Imagine that in there were perhaps six or eight poorly lighted rooms, with maybe a lounge in each one, no dressers or chairs and no bath but still the enterprising citizen knew that the traveling public must be accommodated.

So as time went on the idea was enlarged upon, better places were selected for the Inns, the public instead of being turned away was catered to, until the time came when Longfellow tells us that "He who has not been at a tavern knows not what a paradise it is."

As the centuries have passed, the tavern has been improved more and more, but always has been an integral part of history.  One of the world's most beautiful buildings is the Hotel des Invalides in Paris, erected by Louis XIV,  which the disabled soldiers of France have as their home.  So we are leaving the old country with this statement:

"Whether in peace or in time of war, the tavern or hotel is always the place of rest.:

History tells us that our revered George Washington bade farewell to his officers in a tavern.  After the hardships and heart-breaking struggle for freedom, he called his officers to attention for the first message to a free people and a last message of a great general.  And the place for this solemn ceremony was a hotel. And among the other events and places written down in our history is the name of the Fraunces Tavern.

Of course, everyone knows the necessity for hotels, but not until one really gets to searching the records of a civilization, does one understand the lasting influence hotels have had on the lives of a nation.

We are all well acquainted with the old, old saying, that no chain is stronger than its weakest link.  So in the same language, we may say that our hotels as well as our churches and shrines, reflect the spirit of our surroundings.  Furthermore, when we erect a beautiful edifice for the traveler, who knows but that we may be entertaining angels unaware?

So we are proud to have the honor of dedicating the above to Liberal's beautiful new palace of rest, the Hotel Warren...

This is a dedication written in honor of the first new hotel in a small Midwestern town of Liberal Kansas..It was printed on plaques and placed in each room of the hotel and a bronze plaque was placed on the exterior front of the building and rested there for over 30 years until the hotel was remodeled and the plaques were taken down and thusly, misplaced and lost.

Rosa Howell Williams was a news correspondent for the local paper for over 50 years at which time she became blind and had to quit writing.

Ms. Rosa was my gentle Scottish mother with a long descendancy of Scot ancestry..I just thought this would be an appropriate Christmas story of one type manger as compared to the manger of the Christ child.



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