SOURCE: The O'Henry Hotel photo, shown above on right, was sent to me courtesy of John D. Foor who has been instrumental in helping provide the history of William Foor's hotels. He also notes that the current O'Henry Hotel is a replacement for the original building a few blocks away that was torn down; "They reproduced the 'classic' style of the William Foor Hotel from the 1920's. Another William Foor Hotel in Charleston, SC (The Francis Marion) is still in operation in the original building. It was thoroughly renovated in the last 10 years and is 'better-than-new". A major hotel chain operates the Francis Marion, but it is the original hotel name and building" [May, 2002]. John also sent the following information, (newspaper name/date not specified); "William Foor took over the Francis Marion about 1919 and lost it in his financial downfall during the Great Depression about 1929. My Uncle Francis E. Foor worked at the Francis Marion Hotel under his Uncle William Foor. I extracted the specific paragraph covering this topic from the attached file." "Six years later, in 1916, he bought the newly built Hotel Cleveland at Spartanburg, South Carolina, which he opened in 1917. Being one of the first to realize the opportunities of the new South, that were yet to come, Colonel Foor soon acquired in rapid succession the controlling interest in The O. Henry, at Greensboro, NC; The Sheraton, at High Point, NC; The Charlotte, Charlotte, NC, The Francis Marion, Charleston, SC; The George W. Vanderbilt, Ashville, NC and The John Sevier, Johnson City, TN. Shortly after he came North and acquired controlling interest in the George Washington, Washington, PA; The Cumberland, Bridgeton, NJ. His acceptance of the managership of The Leverich Towers Hotel in New York City, while still retaining his other interests, is his latest move to the top of his profession."

The original O.Henry Hotel was built in downtown Greensboro in 1919 at the southwest corner of Bellemeade and North Elm Streets. The first of the city’s modern hotels, the O.Henry was built as a community project through local stock subscriptions, with Clement G. Wright as leader. It occupied Wright’s old homesite and that of his grandfather, Jesse H. Lindsay, one of Greensboro’s very first citizens. The hotel was an immediate success! Within six weeks after opening, it could not accommodate all the guests. An adjoining tobacco warehouse was converted into an annex to take care of the overflow. Having 300 rooms, the O. Henry was one of the largest and finest hotels in the state for many decades. As interstates were built and the city grew away from the downtown area, business declined and the hotel closed in the 60s. The original O.Henry Hotel was razed in 1979. [O.henryhotel.com, 2005]


Newspaper Excerpts Regarding the O'Henry Hotel in Greensboro, NC.

1919 - The O. Henry Hotel has just been completed in Greensboro, N.C. It will be formally opened June 1 with appropriate ceremonies in which Mrs. Porter (O. Henry's widow), Mrs. Cesare, his daughter, and Dr. C. Alphonso Smith, his friend and biographer, will take part. [The Indianapolis Star, Indianapolis, IN., May 3, 1919]

1920 - North Carolina College Commencement - senior farewell banquet held at the O'Henry Hotel Friday, May 28th, from 9-11 p.m. [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, May 15, 1920, p 5]

1920 - Greensboro News - Toxler Brothers yesterday received a check from the O. Henry hotel for $1,474.20 in payment for 1,189 spring chickens weighing 1,734 pounds, that were devoured at the Shriners' dinner prepared by the O. Henry hotel on Friday. [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC., June 2, 1920]

1920 - "Will Ask Continuance of Gas Rate Question" - cities in which gas companies are seeking higher rates want more time. Representatives from Raleigh, Durham, Winston-Salem, Charlotte, Goldsboro and Elizabeth City met at the O. Henry hotel at 10 a.m. and remained in session until the middle of the afternoon. [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, July 20, 1920, p 5]

1920 - Mrs. H. L. Darden, the wife of the assistant manager of the O. Henry Hotel, and her sister, Miss Nina Brunson, complimented Miss Pearl Rainey, a bride of next week, with a five course luncheon at the O. Henry Saturday at 1 o'clock. [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, Oct. 18, 1920, p 5]

1922 - The breaking up of a gang of professional burglars, dope sellers, bootleggers, gamblers, and general bad men who were planning a big coup in or near Greensboro this weekend in the burglarizing of three or four banks or stores is believed to have been effected yesterday by the Greensboro police dept. in the capture of three men...Joseph Bruno, was registered at the O. Henry under the name of H. R. Sterling, was regarded as the leader. [The Bee, Danville, VA., Dec. 28, 1922]

1924 - Dr. and Mrs. H. Inberg, accompanied by Mmiss Matilda Chatelain, will motor to Greensboro tomorrow where they will take Thanksgiving dinner at the O. Henry Hotel. [The Bee, Danville, VA., Nov. 26, 1924] O'Henry Hotel, postcard ca 1930's

1926 - "Norsworthy Sues Greensboro Hotel - former Gastonia Book Man Now in Charlotte, Alleges He Was Falsely Arrested On Drunk Charge--asks for $20,000. Charlotte, Jan. 14, Asserting that he was sick, not intoxicated, J. T. Norsworthy, book dealer now in Charlotte, filed suit for $20,000 in superior court here yesterday against the O. Henry Hotel company, owner, and the Foor Robinson Hotel company lessor, of the O. Henry hotel in Greensboro, alleging that the defendants' agents had him jailed in Greensboro for two days and a night early in November. The book man demands $5000 on each of four counts, actual damages for the alleged hardship and mental anguish of being incarcerated without medical attention while sick, and actual damages for alleged libelous arrest with punitive damages in like amounts on each allegation. Mr. Norsworthy said that he registered at the hotel November 5, feeling ill, and that his condition became worse by the next day when he prepared to check out for the purpose of going to Winston-Salem to place himself in the care of his physician. As he was on the point of leaving the hotel, he said, a policeman named W. M. Johnson, under instructions from the hotel management, arrest him, and against his protest, took him to the city prison under charges of being drunk. While in custody, he declares he demanded the attention of a physician, also requested that he be allowed to communicate with his friends, both of which pleas were denied to him. When the case came up for trial in city court the next day the plaintiff states, the judge found him without blame and declared him not guilty. The complaint was filed by Frank H. Kennedy, of this city, who is associated in the case with W. E. Hennessee, John C. Busby and A. H. Price, of Greensboro", [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, Jan. 14, 1926, p 4.]

1926 - "Raleigh, April 19 - A successor to Charles A. Cannon as Republican nominee for United States senator will be chosen at a meeting of the Republican State Executive committee called by Brownlow Jackson, state chairman, for next Thursday in the O. Henry hotel in Greensboro", [Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, April 19, 1926, p 4.]

1927 - "O'Henry Hotel to Answer Charge of Norsworthy - the O. Henry hotel company of Greensboro, will send its agents and witnesses to the stand in Mecklenburg Superior court today to combat evidence given yesterday by J. T. Norsworthy...who is suing the hotel company for $20,000 damages on charges of slander, false arrest and imprisonment. The plaintiff said he engaged a room in the O. Henry November 5, 1925, and the next day when the illness he says he was suffering with became more acute, he went to the lobby and checked out so he could go see a physician in Winston-Salem....[The Gastonia Daily Gazette, Gastonia, NC, May 10, 1927, p 3] O'Henry Hotel, postcard ca 1938

1957 - local chapter of the Credit Women's Breakfast Clubs was hostess at a luncheon yesterday at the North State Association 16th annual convention held at the O. Henry Hotel in Greensboro. [The Daily Times, Burlington, NC., May 8, 1957]

1930 - Miss Virgie Nicholson, attractive looking young woman, whose home address was 106 West 15th street, Norfolk, VA., committed suicide in her room at the O. Henry hotel last night about 10 o'clock by taking bichloride tablets and carbolic acid. Despondencey over a love affair with a local young man was assigned as the motive for the rash act in two notes found in the room. The young woman was found lying on the bed in a dying condition by a woman in an adjoining room who was attracted by the groans of the victim. This was 10 o'clock. Medical aid was summoned immediately, but it came too late to save the woman's life... [The Landmark, Statesville, NC, April 17, 1930]

1940 - an advertisement for "Dinkler Hotels", Carling Dinkler, President and General Manager, shows they operate several hotels including the O.Henry in Greensboro [The Cullman Democrat, Cullman, Alabama, June 20, 1940]

1991 - The obituary of Rosie Lee Moore, 70, a native of Greensboro, NC, mentions that she was a former employee of the O'Henry Hotel. [Syracuse Herald Journal, Syracuse, NY., April 28, 1991.]


"This is information about the O Henry Hotel in Greensboro, NC. My father, Paul Lindsay Sikes, Sr. was 15 years old when he hauled bricks for the construction of the hotel in a wheelbarrow. He talked about rolling the wheelbarrow up wooden boards as the hotel became taller. As a result of this hard work on such a young body he was always stooped although he stood 6’2”. He built beautiful homes in Greensboro and also did significant renovation of existing homes. He was a faithful member of the Young Men’s Bible Class at College Place Methodist Church. Photo and preceding text submitted by Bonnie Parker. Paul Lindsay Sikes, Sr. was born October 18, 1905 and died in October 1978.

Paul Lindsay Sikes, Sr.

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