History of the Mayor's Mansion Inn
Chattanooga, TN -
In 1889, Edmond G. Watkins stepped out onto his front lawn and marveled at his latest
construction. It was more than just a home for his wife and family; it was a monument to the
rebirth of the south after surviving the Civil War. Built from the Union Army redoubt, Fort Wood,
stones that had once seen battles now saw a future of beauty and elegance.
With his drive and vision, Watkins soon became president of the Lookout Mountain Land
Company and the Chattanooga and Lookout Mountain Railway Company and was lauded for his
"energy, activity, and enterprise" that drove the development of the mountain. For his eagerness in
seeing Chattanooga prosper after the trials of the war between the states, Watkins was elected
mayor of the Scenic City in 1897, thus allowing his Victorian Romanesque home to become the
The beauty of this three story marvel, from the
hand-laid parquet floors containing five
different types of wood, to its 14 gables, is the overwhelming sense of history
that roams its halls and rooms. In 1901, the house was purchased by
Edward Gould Richmond for his family. They were Chattanooga's wealthiest
residents at the time, and were incredibly active in the community. Mr.
Richmond was the first president of the Chattanooga Library and one of the original trustees
of the Carnegie Library. His dealings in cotton, oil, land development and the railway allowed him
to give more to charity than the YMCA and the churches of the area combined.
Today, the restored Mayor's Mansion Inn is Chattanooga's only AAA 4 Diamond property.
It contains over 13,000 square feet and boasts 5 beautifully appointed rooms and 6 lavish suites,
each with private baths. Guests enjoy a delicious 3 course gourmet breakfast each morning of their
stay in the lovely Tiffany Dining Room. There is the peaceful Mayor's Library for relaxation, and
the Fort Wood Ballroom is an elegant setting for weddings and corporate events. The Inn is the
cornerstone of the Fort Wood Historic District, and is conveniently located close to
Chattanooga's downtown attractions, business and art districts, and many fine dining
Edmond G. Watkins created a monument to the rebirth of the south, and the
staff of the
Mayor's Mansion Inn continue that tradition of providing you with a place for beauty, elegance,
and rebirth. The innkeepers stand behind their motto: "Making your stay as unforgettable as your
surroundings." Come find your place in history at the Mayor's Mansion Inn.
To contact the Inn or make reservations call 423-265-5000 or
visit the Mayor's Mansion Inn website at
If you would like more information about the
Mayor's Mansion Inn please call 423-265-5000