Named for Irish philosopher Bishop George Berkeley, the Berkeley House was built in 1875 by Charles F. Gray for the accommodation of tuberculosis patients who were then beginning to come to Saranac Lake for their health. It originally had a capacity for only fifteen or twenty guests. Eugene Woodruff succeeded Gray as proprietor, and in 1882 a Mr. Streeter and his partner Mr. Dennison took it over, enlarged it, and ran it successfully for a number of years. U. S. President Benjamin Harrison stayed at the Berkeley in September of 1890 when he was in town to dedicate the new Saranac Lake High School. In 1913 it was bought by Walter Sagendorf, who owned it until 1940. The hotel received significant damage in a fire on January 1, 1925, but it was rebuilt and reopened. The hotel was bought in 1978 by 21 year old John McClain who refurbished the hotel for use by those attending the 1980 Winter Olympics. It burned to the ground, January 10, 1981. It became Berkeley Square park.
Berkeley House, Historic Saranac Lake Local Wiki. Accessed April 9th 2020. https://localwiki.org/hsl/Berkeley_House.
Courtesy of John Van Anden
Adirondack Daily Enterprise