SOUTH AMANA, Iowa- A former hotel which once welcomed visitors to the Amana by train, is up for sale.
The building has been vacant for 20 years.
“It was built in 1884 as a hotel to serve the railroad depot that was up here, it kind of served as the front door to the Amana Colonies,” said Laura Hoover, Executive Director of the Amana Colonies Historical Sites Foundation. “We’re looking to match the building up with it’s best user, we want someone who can see the potential in the building, and move it forward. so we’re not necessarily looking for the best price for the building.”
The Historical Sites Foundation in the Amana Colonies works to take historical properties which no longer have a use, and finding a new purpose and buyer.
“Amana Colonies are a national historic landmark, that landmark designation includes all buildings that were built here prior to 1932, that’s about 500 buildings,” said Hoover.
The Amana Colonies were the largest, and most successful religious communal societies in the early part of the 1900’s. The commune dissolved in 1932.
“The Church of the True Inspiration was founded in Germany in the 1500s,” said Hoover. “In the 1830s they came to upstate NY, they came to Iowa in 1855 looking for land.”
Hoover said the churches were built at the center of each village, as the church was the center of life. Many parishioners would go to church services as many as 11 times per week.
If someone wants information on these historic properties, contact Hover via email at firstname.lastname@example.org