Lincoln’s Lindell Hotel

In September of 1968 the demolition of Lincoln’s Lindell Hotel, then called the Lindell Palace, marked the end of one of Nebraska’s noted hotels. Located at Thirteenth and M streets, the brick structure was completed in 1886. It eventually enjoyed the distinction of being the political headquarters for Lancaster County and for most of the state. The Sunday Journal and Star on April 1, 1962, included a capsule summary of the old hotel, which noted:

“Thirteenth and M was a hotel corner even before the pioneer Lincoln physician, Dr. A. L. Hoover, built his brick hotel there in the early 1880s. Earlier in that decade, Dr. Hoover had purchased the frame building known as the Townley [established by J. N. Townley] and operated as a boarding house. He moved this to one side to build the hotel.” A. B. Hayes and Sam D. Cox in History of the City of Lincoln, Nebraska, published in 1889, said of the new Lindell: “This is a pleasant, quiet, home-like place, new and tidy, . . . It has a capacity of over 100 guests, and is furnished with the leading hotel conveniences.”

The Sunday Journal and Star noted, “This hotel attracted paying guests whose names are familiar to today’s younger generation. There was William Jennings Bryan, many times a guest, who made his last major home town speech from a balcony that disappeared in a post-World War I facelifting of the Lindell. Carry Nation was another famous visitor as she came to Lincoln on her temperance crusades.” The Lindell reportedly operated without a bar for years, something of a novelty in pioneer Lincoln, so it became a headquarters for temperance organizations.

After Dr. Hoover gave up the Lindell, Miller & Paine became its owners. Subsequent owners included Mr. and Mrs. J. E. Palm and then Mr. and Mrs. C. E. Woodbury, who sold the historical gathering place in 1946. In 1952 the hotel was purchased by Lincoln businessman Bennett Martin. There was some talk in 1966 of restoring the Lindell to its 1880s condition, when costly carpets covered the floors, elegant furniture occupied the rooms, and the building’s outstanding feature was its plumbing. The Lindell was the scene of glittering Nebraska Centennial festivities in 1967.

However, the Lindell had largely outlived its usefulness and in September 1968 was demolished to make room for a twenty-story bank and office building. A crowd of onlookers saw a three-thousand-pound steel ball hurled against the walls by a giant crane before they came crashing down. An auction was held prior to the demolition to dispose of “glassware, hall trees, potted plants, paintings and an old rolltop desk,” among many other items. More than four hundred bidders competed for souvenirs from what was once Lincoln’s premier hotel.


The undated photo on this postcard depicts the Lindell Hotel at Thirteenth and M streets, Lincoln. NSHS RG2158-411

Become a Member!

Our members make history happen.

Join Now

Other Publications

The Bachelors’ Protective Union of Kearney

When the Bachelors' Protective Union gave a gala reception for two of its newly married, former members and their brides in March of 1890, the social club for young, ...

U.S. Weather Bureau in 1890s Nebraska

The U.S. Weather Bureau was established by an act of Congress on October 1, 1890. It took over the weather service that had been established in the office of the Chief ...

Canning the Way to Victory

During American participation in World War I the U.S. Food Administration, under the direction of Herbert Hoover, launched a massive campaign to persuade Americans to ...

The Shoemaker’s Ashes

"Edward Kuehl, one of the most peculiar characters that ever lived in Omaha, or anywhere else, was found dead in his bed last night in the back room of his place of ...

Crazy Horse Surrender Ledger Foreward

Red Dog, an Oglala Lakota who lived at the Red Cloud Agency, Nebraska, 1876-77 (Nebraska State Historical Society   In the summer of 1876, following the ...

Darryl F. Zanuck

Darryl F. Zanuck Darryl F. Zanuck (1902-1979), a native Nebraskan, produced some of Hollywood's most important and controversial films. He helped found 20th Century Fox ...

The Burlington’s Profitable Pork Special

Nebraska railroads were much concerned with developing an adequate economy in the areas they served. The Burlington, for example, had a long history of caring for the ...

Bungalow Filling Stations

After the giant Standard Oil Company was broken into thirty-four separate companies in 1911, the newly independent Standard Oil of Nebraska dominated the state's market ...

The Bull Fight

This is the perfect time of year for a visit to the old fishin' hole. But a group of fisherfolk from Plainview discovered that this bucolic pastime sometimes has ...

Buffalo Soldiers West

African-American soldiers on the western frontier are the focus of an exhibit at the Nebraska History Museum in Lincoln. Buffalo Soldiers West, on loan from the Colorado ...

Protection for Buffalo

The extermination of the buffalo on the Plains occurred largely between 1870 and 1885. The Nebraska State Journal of Lincoln on February 1, 1874, editorialized in vain ...

Buffalo Hunting

In late October 1877 young Rolf Johnson and three friends left their homes in Phelps County, Nebraska, for a buffalo hunt in northeastern Colorado. The hunt was not very ...
About History Nebraska
History Nebraska was founded in 1878 as the Nebraska State Historical Society by citizens who recognized Nebraska was going through great changes and they sought to record the stories of both indigenous and immigrant peoples. It was designated a state institution and began receiving funds from the legislature in 1883. Legislation in 1994 changed History Nebraska from a state institution to a state agency. The division is headed by Interim Director and CEO Jill Dolberg. They are assisted by an administrative staff responsible for financial and personnel functions, museum store services, security, and facilities maintenance for History Nebraska.
Explore Nebraska
Discover the real places and people of our past at these History Nebraska sites.

Upcoming Events

View our new and upcoming events to see how you can get involved.

Become a Member

The work we do to discover, preserve, and share Nebraska's history wouldn't be possible without the support of History Nebraska members.

History Nebraska Education

Learn more about the educational programs provided at our museums, sites, and online.

Education Digital Learning Resources

Find games, lists, and more to enhance your history education curriculum.

History Nebraska Programs

Learn more about the programs associated with History Nebraska.

Latest Hall of Fame Inductee

The Nebraska Hall of Fame was established in 1961 to officially recognize prominent Nebraskans.

Listen to our Podcast

Listen to the articles and authors published in the Nebraska History Magazine with our new Nebraska History Podcast!

Nebraska Collections

History Nebraska's mission is to collect, preserve, and open our shared history to all Nebraskans.

Our YouTube Video Collection

Get a closer look at Nebraska's history through your own eyes, with our extensive video collections.

Additional Research Resources

History Nebraska Research and Reference Services help connect you to the material we collect and preserve.

History Nebraska Services

Digital Resources

Find all of our digital resources, files, videos, and more, all in one easy-to-search page!

Support History Nebraska
Make a cash donation to help us acquire, preserve, and interpret Nebraska’s history. Gifts to History Nebraska help leave a legacy and may help your taxes, too! Support the work of History Nebraska by donating to the History Nebraska Foundation today.

Volunteers are the heroes of History Nebraska. So much history, so little time! Your work helps us share access to Nebraska’s stories at our museums and sites, the reference room, and online.