This photo is from the book “Remembering Wayne – A Pictorial View of People, Places and Pastimes of Wayne County, New York” by Andrea T. Evangelist (Page 122)
From Arch Merrill’s (1944) “The Ridge” pp 34 -35
Linked with stage coach days is the 90-year-old Sodus Hotel, three stories, white, ivy covered. A character named L. L. Whitney Sr., operated it for years. In 1878 when the town voted dry, Whitney was full of wrath. On his property was a pump where nearly all the village came for cool, spring water. The hotel keeper put up a tight, board fence, seven feet high, around the well, announcing that “if the people would not let him sell liquor, they could not drink his water.” It is recorded that Whitney relented and also that Sodus voted “wet” at the next election.
Back of the hotel was a half-mile race track, where in the 1890’s was held the annual fair of the Sodus Agricultural Society.
This mural depiction of the Hotel, Bandstand and Fountain is from around 1917 when the fountain was put in.
To read about the mural, please click on this link: http://muralmania.org/sodus-mural/
The fountain still exists and you can read about it by clicking this link: http://townofsodushistoricalsociety.org/plaques/sodus/sodus-fountain-page/
By the 1960s, the Snider Hotel had morphed into the Hotel Sodus:
Above photo from Jim Miller
Photo and information from the 1979 book: “Wayne County: The Aesthetic Heritage of a Rural Area” by Stephen W. Jacobs with Photographs by David Plowden. Permission courtesy of the Wayne County Historical Society.
Hotel Sodus, Sodus
A typical mid-nineteenth-century rural hotel stands at the four corners in Sodus Village. It faces Main Street, with Mill Street on the west. A long rectangular building three stories high, it has a relatively flat gable roof whose ridge is punctuated by three evenly space narrow brick chimneys with molded bases and caps. Its most distinguished feature is a three-story wooden gallery across the front which stops short of the east end of the building. Along the ground floor old square posts have been replaced with less substantial turned ones, somewhat detracting from the effect intended by the builders. Column spacing is uneven, with a short bay second from the Mill Street end of the porch. This permitted the third bay to be centered on the main entrance.
The principal door is set back in an enframement of Greek revival pilasters and lintel, and flanked by the usual narrow side lights. The door, was employed for the west half of the building. However, the eastern portion did not lend itself to this treatment, since two ground floor units with outside doors (perhaps taproom and barber shop from the beginning) were needed. The four upstairs windows were evenly spaced, but the problem of avoiding porch posts in front of the doors produced some irregularity on the ground floor. The end door is centered between two windows, but east end of the porch is missing. If complete, the porch might have been symmetrical. The inner door (which still has its original trim) is dislocated to the west. Inside it is a bar, from which an old-fashioned furnace is visible through a grille.
The parking lot in front of the hotel was the nucleus of the village, at various times known as East Ridge, Sodus Ridge, and the Corners. Here, south of Main Street and east of Mill, a square was set aside where a frame schoolhouse was built in the fall of 1812. The hotel, a stop on the Butterfield Stage route from Oswego to Rochester at the intersection with the road south to Newark and Lyons, must have been the settlement’s most impressive building. During the Civil War it was taken over by Lorenzo Whitney, and was long called the Whitney House. The Hotel Sodus may be the oldest hotel structure still in active service in Wayne County.
On April 5, 2021, this structure was demolished. As of yet, plans for the use of this property are unclear. Here is a video from Chris Trine showing the demolition using a drone: