PHOTO 3: 1877.
ARRIVAL OF STAGECOACH AT CENTRAL HOTEL.
Mr. Sid S. Majors took over the Lagonda House in September 1876 and renamed it the “Central Hotel.” This hotel was located on the northeast corner of 8th and Main in Winfield. Mr. Majors is shown in this scene, which appears to have been taken when it was cold inasmuch as the people seen are wearing light winter clothes.
The stage shown was probably one that belonged to the Southwestern Stage Company. Its proprietor, Mr. Henry Tisdale of Lawrence, Kansas, set up staging stables and stage drivers throughout Kansas and Indian Territory. In 1877 trains arriving at Wichita connected with the Southwestern Stage Company, which had stages arriving and departing daily for Augusta, Douglass, Winfield, Arkansas City, Oxford, Belle Plaine, El Paso, Sumner City, Wellington, Pond Creek Cheyenne Agency, Wichita Agency, and Fort Sill.
James Fahey, known as “Mickey Jim,” was a stage coachman for about twenty years in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kansas, and Colorado, arriving in Emporia when that city was longing for a railroad and again at Newton, El Dorado, and finally Wichita. In May 1877 “Mickey Jim,” at that time the driver from Wichita to El Paso, was seriously hurt in crossing the bridge over the little creek at the Dutch Ranche, some few miles south of Wichita. He was driving his four horses and the heavy coach. The leaders became frightened and backed off the bridge, pulling the whole outfit after them. The horses were all more or less injured, and the coach smashed into flinders. “Mickey” went down with the coach and horses, and sustained very serious injuries—his arm being broken and his back badly hurt. Mr. Fahey left the world of upset coaches and broken limbs to become one of Winfield’s quiet citizens in May 1878, dealing fermented spirits over the bar at the National Saloon, located on the southeast corner of Main Street and 8th Avenue in Winfield across from the Central Hotel.
Mr. Fahey replaced the earlier occupants at this location: George P. Townsend and James C. Binner. In June 1877 the Winfield City Council issued a license for a saloon and billiard hall to Messrs. Townsend & Carrol, of Independence, Kansas, whose outfit consisted of a billiard table, a fifteen ball pool table, large mirrors, glassware, etc. The building was repaired and fitted up for their use. Carroll became ill in July 1877 and was replaced in August 1877 with James C. Binner. Townsend advertised their saloon as the “Custom House.” In September it was reported that Binner lost $600 by theft and the money was not recovered. The Winfield Courier gave him advice: “Deposit your money in a bank the next time, James. Winfield has two of the soundest banks that there are in the State.” In October 1877 Binner was granted the privilege of carrying on the saloon business under the license issued to Geo. P. Townsend when his bond was approved at a special meeting of the Winfield City Council. Binner changed the name of the saloon, calling it the “Railroad Saloon.” In December 1877 he purchased four fine oil landscape paintings, which he hung upon the wall, and some fine engravings of the many celebrated trotting and running horses of that day. The saloon closed in April 1878 when it was announced that its proprietor, James C. Binner, was gone, gone, gone, and his creditors were scrambling over what he left behind. The liquor from the saloon was sold on the street at auction in June 1878.