A statewide project equipping K-12 educators to teach Iowa history using primary sources

Teaching Iowa History Logo

Home » Bibliography » 19th Century Cedar Falls Hotels Mischief Murder Immorality

19th Century Cedar Falls Hotels: Mischief, Murder, & Immorality

Book Summary: Mischief, murder, and immorality are timeless, as author Cynthia Sweet illustrates with her survey of nineteenth century Cedar Falls, Iowa hotels. The first stage tavern was established in Cedar Falls within five years of the community's settlement and shortly thereafter the mischief began. When the Western Stage Company rolled into town each evening it brought weary travelers weighed down with troubles, rowdy entertainers, and wicked men and women. Once lodged in Cedar Falls hotels, they became part of the community and the stories of their mysterious deaths, boisterous drinking, and scandalous behavior filled the columns of the Cedar Falls Gazette from 1860-1900. Drawing on existing newspapers, census records, and the archives of the Cedar Falls Historical Society, Sweet explains the development of local hotels through multiple name changes, owners, and scandals and identifies their physical location using a combination of maps, land records and other clues. While the hotels provide the arena in which scandals occur and are thus the organizing mechanism for the book, Sweet also provides fascinating community context with details about local businesses, community events, and families. For any use other than instructional resources, please check with the organization that owns this item regarding copyright restrictions.
The Iowan
Publishing Place
Des Moines, Iowa
U.S. Chronology
Iowa History Eras
Iowa County
Early & Late Date
2006 to 2016
Resources & Additional Info
This book connects to the following standards: Standard SS.1.23 Cultural Makeup: A lesson could be created on the early cultural makeup of Cedar Falls, Iowa and how this cultural makeup changed over time. Standard SS.3.27 Immigration and Migration: A lesson could be created on why people came to Cedar Falls, Iowa.