William Quantrill, Historic Kansas City Foundation, Quality Hill Apartments
Originally named the Broadway Hotel, the Coates House Hotel was the finest hotel of its time and was once nicknamed “the hotel of the presidents.” Kersey Coates, namesake of the hotel, arrived in Kansas City in 1854 with a desire to help develop the land that was then mostly wild pastureland. His most significant accomplishments were in the Quality Hill neighborhood where he built the Coates House Hotel. Designs and building plans for the opulent Coates House Hotel stopped during the Civil War when the Union army claimed the hotel for barracks. Before the hotel was built, Union soldiers from Fort Leavenworth established horse stables on its foundation in order to protect Kansas Citians from an invasion by William Quantrill.
Eventually, the war ended and the community recovered. A wealthy neighborhood began to grow around the hotel, which offered a luxurious stay to such famous guests as Grover Cleveland and Theodore Roosevelt.
A fatal fire destroyed the south side of the Coates House Hotel on January 28, 1978 resulting in the most loss of life by fire in the history of Kansas City. Thanks to the Historic Kansas City Foundation, the lovely building at the corner of 10th and Broadway escaped the wrecking ball.