Two views of the Hurley Hotel,  late 1800s, operated by Lewis Van Sickle, also known as Van Sickle Inn and Tavern. Established in 1716, it was considered the oldest inn in the country. It was one of two hotels operating in Hurley when Homer visited. It was destroyed by fire in 1909.  (courtesy of Hurley Historian)



Site of former Van Sickle Inn and Tavern.  After the inn burned, it was replaced by a small general store, then by Key Bank, and most recently became the new Hurley Library.  The original Inn was situated much closer to the road than the Library is now and occupied what is now the Library's front yard.  (Photo: Bruce Whistance 2019)

Williamson painting

John Williamson, American, 1826-1885
Hurley Hotel (undated)
Oil on canvas
Hurley Heritage Society Museum, Hurley, NY

The Hurley Heritage Society was fortunate to acquire this painting in 2010 through the generous donations of Society members.  It is especially important to Hurley because it memorializes an historic structure that was destroyed by fire in 1909.  The artist John Williamson, who was elected to the National Academy of Design in 1861, specialized in landscape painting especially New York State scenes.

1909 Fire

Van Sickle Inn and Tavern – March 18, 1909
On this date, the town awoke early in the morning to find the beautiful hotel on fire. The building was a total loss.  The townspeople worked hard to prevent the fire from spreading to neighboring buildings.  This view of the back of the Inn is taken from Schoolhouse Road.  (original photo in NYHS collection)