Dumas hotel

Known Name(s)

Dumas hotel


Henry St. NW Roanoke, VA

Establishment Type(s)


Physical Status



From the Henry Street Historic District National Register nomination: The Hotel Dumas at 108 First Street NW, constructed in 1916-1917 as the Hotel Hampton by the Central Manufacturing Company, stands as the oldest building in the district and stands on the site of the former Hotel Pierce. This three-story, three-bay brick building features a heavy, molded wood comice below the stepped brick parapet; sets of three, one-over-one wood sash windows with a continuous concrete sill within each slightly recessed bay on the upper floors; and, a reconstructed wooden storefront with two recessed bays and a double-leaf entrance of single-light wood doors. The building originally consisted of 26 guest rooms as well as a cleaning and pressing service, a snack bar, an ice cream parlor, a dining room, two pool rooms, and a 2nd floor ballroom. The building was partially rehabilitated in 1992. 

Detailed History

The Hotel Dumas is a contributing structure included in the Henry Street Historic District National Register nomination: The transition from residential to commercial in this community could be marked by the Central Manufacturing Company's decision to construct the Hotel Hampton (Hotel Dumas) at the comer of Henry Street and Loudon Avenue in 1916-1917. This 26-room hotel also featured a dining room, a cleaning and pressing service, the Jack and Jill snack shop, a poolroom and a 2nd floor ballroom. The Central Manufacturing Company originally leased the hotel to James Hughes and T.C. Cooper, who then purchased the property in 1919 and changed the name to the Hotel Dumas. The hotel continued to operate from 1933 until 1976 under the ownership of the Barlow family, serving as accommodations for travelers and entertainers during the Jim Crow days of segregation and as a social gathering place for the local black community." Entertainers who performed at the Morocco Night Club stayed at the Hotel Dumas, including Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Fats Waller, and Ethel Waters, Cab Calloway, Lionel Hampton, Fats Domino, Dizzy Gillespie and the Harlem Globetrotters. 

See http://nmtccoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/uRBAN-lAND-01-2007.pdf for a story about the 2007 redevelopment of the hotel by Total Action Against Poverty (TAP).

See this 2017 City Lab article about TAP's sale of the property and more information about the renewal of this part of town:


In a May 2021 interview with Restoration Housing, historian Jordan Bell indicated that Mack Barlow Sr. and his son Mack Barlow Jr. operated the  Dumas Hotel. Many who performed at the Morocco Night Club, best known as the Strand to locals in the Gainsboro community, stayed at the Dumas. Guests at the Dumas included James Brown, Little Richard, Ella Fitzgerald, and Duke Ellington. Morocco/Strand perfomers included Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, Cab Calloway, Fats Domino, and Lena Horne.

The three-block Henry Street held a variety of over 200 businesses and was a vibrant African-American community often compared to the Harlem Renaissance. Late 1960s, early 1970s urban renewal decimated the community. Properties were seized by eminent domain, buildings were bulldozed, and road changes cut Henry Street off from downtown Roanoke.


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