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Songs and Stories
     December 16, 2019      #8E-350 SsK

'The Best Downstate Hotel in Illinois' 


By Jack Klasey

When the Hotel Kankakee opened for business on Aug. 14, 1926, it advertised itself as “The Best Downstate Hotel in Illinois.” While such a claim might be difficult to prove, the seven-story, 150-room brick building could confidently state that it was Kankakee’s newest and most modern hotel.

The hotel’s site on the northeast corner of Merchant Street and Schuyler Avenue placed it in the heart of the city’s downtown business district. It was located directly across Schuyler from the Arcade Building (the city’s premier office address); across Merchant Street from the Chicago Store, a major department ...

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Jack Klasey
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