The Hopewell Inn, long known as the Central Hotel, had a nearly 150 year history as a part of the town of Hopewell before it was demolished in July 2022.
This presentation explores the forgotten history of the Hopewell Inn, and the people and families who nurtured and reinvigorated the building and ran the businesses through the years. It also includes a visual tour of the building in its final form – not only the exterior and public spaces, but also the upstairs rooms, cellar, and foundation.
See below for the presentation video and slides, and other Hopewell Inn material, from The Story of the Hopewell Inn – and the People Who Sustained It presentation by Douglas Dixon, held on May 3, 2023 at the Hopewell Theater, and online.
The Hopewell Inn / Central Hotel
The Hopewell Inn building has a nearly 150 year history as a residential home and store, bar and restaurant, and lodging and apartments. It has seen multiple renovations with additions and porches, and also has been known as the Central Hotel, Cray’s Hotel, and Gebhart’s Hotel.
See earlier post with more on the history of the Hopewell / Inn.
== See the full Hopewell Inn history brief (PDF) for much more detail on the history, people, and renovations to the building, plus references for this information ==
Hopewell Inn Talk Video and Slides
The Story of the Hopewell Inn – and the People Who Sustained It presentation by Douglas Dixon, held on May 3, 2023 at the Hopewell Theater, and online.
Hopewell Public Library Speaker Series, co-sponsored by the Hopewell Valley Historical Society and The Hopewell Museum.
Presentation slides (PDF)
Video of the Bar at the Hopewell Inn – c. 1975
Short video clip from c. 1975 of the interior of the bar area of the Hopewell Inn, at 15 East Broad Street in Hopewell, N. J. (4:44). Enhanced and brightened for better visibility in the dark bar. Courtesy of Furman Hendrickson.
The property was owned by Albert and Rose Mar Rathousky from 1970 to 1977. In the video, Albert is the bartender, and Rose is the white-haired woman. At the time, the bar room was on the right (Hopewell Public Library) side of the first floor of the building. In the room, the bar was along the left wall, and the shuffleboard and darts were along the right wall with the windows.
This “The Jersey Gin Mill” clip was included in “Jean Shepherd on Route 1… and Other Major Thoroughfares,” a NJN / PBS special from 1984. In that piece, “Shep addresses the viewer directly from the back seat of a limousine traveling along the modern version of the first highway in America. He muses on what he observes through the windows.”
A copy of the “Route 1” piece is posted on YouTube, but unfortunately is missing both the opening and the ending, and therefore has no titles or credits (42 minutes, at 26:40).
Unfortunately, the original source of the Hopewell Inn clip is unclear, since it was shot around a decade before the broadcast. The Shepherd piece simply rolls the video to illustrate Shepherd’s musings. It does not identify the scene, in the narration or with external shots of the building.
Hopewell Inn Images and Tours
Hopewell Inn Tour – Panoramas, Videos, Photos
Hopewell Inn Memorabilia
– Building and artifact images
Hopewell Inn Demolition Updates
– Photos and Videos
We welcome additional information and materials on the Hopewell Inn to share.
More on the Hopewell Inn – 15 East Broad
The Hopewell Valley Bistro & Inn building at 15 East Broad Street on the corner of Seminary Avenue was demolished in July 2022. Long known as the Central Hotel, the building had a nearly 150 year history as a residential home and store, bar and restaurant, and lodging and apartments.
Hopewell Inn History
- The Hopewell Inn / Central Hotel – Summary of the property’s history
- Full History Brief – 15 East Broad Street, Hopewell – Hopewell Inn (c1878) (PDF)
- Presentation video and references – The Story of the Hopewell Inn – Video and References
Hopewell Inn Information
- Hopewell Images During the Lindbergh Kidnapping (1932) – Exterior photos
- Seeing What’s Different – Changes to the Hopewell Inn – 4 phases in the building’s design
- Inside the Hopewell Inn – 1932 – Photos of the interior
Hopewell Inn Tours – 2022
- Hopewell Inn Tours – Panoramas, Videos, Photos
- Tour Panoramas – Browse 180- and 360-degree Pans in Panorama Collection
- Tour Videos – Video walkthroughs of the first, second, and third floors (YouTube)
- Tour Image Gallery – 130 images of a photo walkthrough of the entire building
Hopewell Inn Memorabilia
- Hopewell Inn Memorabilia – Building and artifacts
- Memorabilia Image Gallery – Hopewell Inn Memorabilia album
Hopewell Inn Media
- Video – 1975 Video at the Hopewell Inn Bar – Clip of patrons at the bar
- Photos – Hopewell Inn photos (15 East Broad) in the Image Gallery
- History Map – 15 East Broad – Town map and historical images
Hopewell Inn Construction – 2023
- Construction Image Gallery – Hopewell Inn Construction album
Hopewell Inn Demolition – July 2022