From the first step you take into the Edwardian Inn, you cannot help but be swept back in time. You can feel the enchantment of a bygone era. In 1885 Mr. and Mrs. William A. Short came to Helena from Mobile, Alabama. Mr. Short had been engaged by the Howell Cotton Company of Little Rock, Arkansas to conduct a branch of their business in this city. In 1888, W.A. Short started his own cotton business, which quickly expanded. In 1904 Mr. William Short built this home which is now known as The Edwardian Inn. The house was built by the Clem brothers, who were believed until just recently to have been from St. Louis, but have now been determined to have been from Fordyce. They also built several other homes in the Helena area, including two “sister houses”, the Short-Bieri house and the West-Webb house. From the late thirties until the early eighties, the house had been used as an apartment building, boarding house, alcohol rehabilitation center and other businesses until being completely restored as a bed and breakfast in 1983.
The Edwardian Inn is an outstanding example of fine homes that were built in Helena around the turn of the century. The quarter-sawn oak paneling that is used extensively throughout the house may have come from the 24 sawmills that were in the area at the time. Expert craftsmen in Chicago made the nine original mantels in the house. Eight of them remain in place with the ninth being used as the front desk for the inn. Wood carpeting made in Germany of 36 different kinds of woods are used throughout the first floor. The stairway is of oak and is in excellent condition.
All rooms have individual controls for the heating and air conditioning as well as ceiling fans. Each guest room has a connecting private bathroom. For more information, please visit edwardianinn.com.
The Edwardian has a front dining room that can comfortably accomodate ten people. It’s a great location for a small meeting or board retreat. Contact the Helena A&P Commision for help planning your next meeting in Helena.