John Newton Downing
Submitted by Judy Damewood June 13, 2010
Idaho News Examiner, Montpelier, Idaho, January 2, 1941, page 1
Death of Pioneer Hotel Man
John Newton Downing born in Texas County, Missouri, April 4, 1866, died in a local hospital Wednesday. Mr. Downing, prominently identified with the growth of Montpelier, first came here in the eighties, working as a cook for Phil Hanak, who operated a restaurant. After being away for a while, he returned in the late nineties and from his savings purchased the original Burgoyne hotel from Edward Burgoyne. This building, which forms part of the present Downing apartments and used to stand on the present site of the hotel, was built for a Y.M.C.A. by Mr. Burgoyne.
In 1898, 1901, 1908, 1916, and 1925 additions were built on the hotel until now it has eighty guest rooms and several store rooms. In carrying out his policy of investing his money in Bear Lake county property, Mr. Downing also purchased a large farm near Bennington. Mr. Downing was a member of King Solomon Masonic lodge. He is survived by his wife, Mrs. Hannah Nelson Downing; two daughters, Mrs. Edith Obery of Montpelier and Mrs. Lela Thomas of Santa Maria, California; a son, E L Downing of Montpelier, nine grandchildren, Paul Richardson, Georgia Downing, Raymond Downing, John L. Perkins, Richard Perkins, Marion Perkins, Mrs. Owen Preston, Boyd Thomas and Clinton Thomas; six great grandchildren; and one sister, Mrs. Julia Marshall of Bremerton, Washington. Funeral services will be held in the L.D.S. tabernacle at 1 p.m. Saturday. The remains may be viewed in the Williams Mortuary Friday and Saturday morning.
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