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The American House Hotel in the Year of Its Second Fire

Striking image of the American House Hotel, from Moore & De Pue's Illustrated History of San Mateo County.

The American Hotel was Redwood City's first hotel.  Built in 1853, it burned in 1864 and was rebuilt in 1867, when it was named the American House.   It burned down again in 1878.

At the time, the hotel was the office of the Redwood & Pescadero Daily Stage.  The stagecoach line that operated in the 1870s by a man named W.S. Low, who was also the proprietor of the hotel. The American House was an important stop on the route of the stagecoach. Before the stagecoach line was established, these area relatively isolated, with few direct connections to the rest of the state.