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Hotel added to National Register of Historic Places

Jan 14, 2013 - From staff reports

The Carpenter Hotel Historic District in Atlantic City became Wyoming's latest addition to the National Register of Historic Places on Dec. 12, 2012. The inclusive years of historic significance for the hotel range from 1904 to 1961.

Nellie Carpenter and her eldest daughter, Ellen Carpenter, began accommodating overnight and long-term guests in six hotel rooms during a resurgent Atlantic City gold rush in 1904. When a dredge was placed on Rock Creek in 1935 the Carpenters expanded the hotel with five more hotel rooms, five log cabins, and living quarters for Ellen Carpenter. Ellen Carpenter accommodated guests and cooked meals at the hotel until her passing in 1961.

During the Carpenters's time, the hotel dining room also housed the Atlantic City post office, where Ellen Carpenter was postmistress, and the town's first public telephone. At one point there was also a filling station on the property.

In the 1950s Ellen Carpenter ran the only business in Atlantic City, renting hotel rooms for $1 a night and serving meals for 50 cents each. A couple from New York City stayed at the Carpenter Hotel during that period and in 1963 bought the hotel from Ellen Carpenter's estate. Out of respect for Miss Ellen, the couple, Gina and Paul Newman, changed the name to Miner's Delight Inn when they added a liquor license to complement the gourmet meals they served at the inn.

The Carpenter Hotel, as Miner's Delight Inn Bed & Breakfast, is likely the only remaining Atlantic City business that is still being used for its original purpose. Current owners, Barbara and Bob Townsend, are in their seventh year at the inn. Barbara Townsend worked for more than 100 hours to compile the information and photographs needed to nominate the Carpenter Hotel for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places.

Barbara's inspiration for the project was Betty (Carpenter) Pfaff. As a girl, Pfaff spent many summers helping her Aunt Ellen Carpenter at the hotel. Pfaff provided a wealth of information that led to her family's hotel being added to the register.

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