Big Tree Room, Cedar Cottage, 1886. The Upper Hotel began construction in 1857 and was completed in 1859. Its frame later became the Cedar Cottage. James Hutchings began ownership of the Upper Hotel, which then became known as the Hutchings House, in 1864. This was just months before Yosemite Valley was granted to the state by the Yosemite Grant. There was a joke in the hotel to not leave your door unlocked. When the visitor went to their room, they realized their door was a sheet and the "wall" separating one room from the next was cheesecloth. In order to get lumber for the hotel, Hutchings built a sawmill. Hutchings hired a man named John Muir to work in this sawmill. An addition was constructed at the rear of the hotel, which enclosed the trunk of a large growing cedar tree. This sitting room with a fire place became known as the "Big Tree Room." This is what led the Hutchings House to be called the Cedar Cottage. In 1874, the state legislature had $60,000 to take away all private claims in Yosemite Valle
Negative Number: RL_14442
U. S. National Park Service
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