Ya’ll Come to the St. James Hotel
By Bob Funk, Sr.
If you know my love for this great country, the American West and all things ‘Cowboy’, you understand why I was compelled to purchase and refurbish the historic St. James Hotel in Cimarron, New Mexico. If you have never visited, please put the James on your list!
Listed below are my favorite tidbits, historic facts and reasons to enjoy a meal, take a quick tour or spend the night at this special venue.
1) The hotel was first built in 1872, on the recommendation of U.S. President Ulysses S. Grant
2) Its builder was Henri (later Henry) Lambert who served as a personal chef to President Abraham Lincoln
3) The St. James had a notable reputation in its day and was visited by many famous lawmen and notorious outlaws. It was also the scene of many murders. A favorite saying in the area became "Who was killed at Lambert's (former name) last night?"
4) You can tell from the Guest Books that the James was visited by Wyatt Earp and his brother Morgan on their way to Tombstone, Arizona. Jesse James always stayed in Room 14
5) Buffalo Bill Cody stayed at the Inn as he took an entire village of Native Americans living nearby on the road with his famed western show
6) Another entertainer and the most recognized female sharpshooter in history, Annie Oakley, was a frequent visitor of the inn
7) The outlaw Davy Crockett, a descendant of the adventurer and Congressman Davy Crockett, killed three renegade soldiers inside the hotel's bar room in 1876
8) Notably, barracks once occupied by Buffalo Soldiers still stand along the Santa Fe train tracks near the St. James property (feel free to peek in; it’s on the road to the Main Lodge of the UU Bar Ranch)
9) St. James guests validate the authenticity of the hotel’s storied past by counting the 20+ bullet holes in the inn’s ceiling. A double layer of hard wood in the ceiling protected anyone sleeping upstairs from being killed from the random barroom brawls and notorious Western gun fights
When the railroad came through and effectively killed the cattle drives which heavily relied on the Santa Fe trail, the St. James fell into disrepair. And between 1926–1985, the hotel passed between many owners. General Manager Terri Caid gets much of the credit for restoring the facility to her former glory helping to keep Western history and legendary stories alive.
Whether you’re a history buff, tired traveler, ‘Ghost Chaser’, hungry Westerner or ski enthusiast on the way to the New Mexico and Colorado ski slopes, please stop by and say hello!
Contact Information and Reservations:
Address: 617 S Collison Ave, Cimarron, NM 87714