Marker #1671 Keene Springs Hotel

Historical Marker #1671, in Jessamine County, Kentucky, notes the Mason Singleton’s hotel that served as a shelter for Lexington residents during the second cholera epidemic.

In 1841, Mason Singleton, Jr., built a two-story Greek Revival hotel and tavern in the hamlet of Keene, in Jessamine County. Singleton and his wife Nancy built the resort near the white sulfur springs (waters that naturally contains amino acids and vitamins). Hot pools of white sulfur springs were known for helping with arthritis, dry skin, digestive disorders, and menopausal symptoms. The Singletons believed their hotel and tavern would serve as a resort for visitors coming to the springs – but it became so much more.

During the second cholera epidemic in Kentucky, residents of Lexington escaped to the Keene Springs Hotel. The hotel was overrun with dwellers that sought solace from the city from 1848 to 1849. The Singletons maintained the hotel until 1857, They then sold the property to Alfred McTyre. The building still stands today and is currently being restored to its original state.

Marker #1671 was dedicated in 1980 by the Kentucky Historical Society and the Kentucky Department of Transportation. It reads: Keene Springs Hotel. This two-story frame building was erected by Mason Singleton. White sulphur water was discovered circa 1848; its medicinal qualities made hotel and adjoining tavern popular summer resort of 1840s and 1850s. Captain G. L. Postlethwait was its most noted host. This was place of safety during cholera panic in Lexington. Site sold to A. McTyre in 1857; to F. S. Wilson in 1868.