5. Biltmore Hotel
Photo from Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Co.
Byrd make a connection with John McEntee Bowman, the owner of the Biltmore Hotel, one of the hotels within the Terminal City complex at Grand Central Terminal, and arranged to have both his living quarters and the expedition headquarters relocated to the third floor of the hotel.
As Shapiro writes, “The Biltmore was a luxurious hotel next to Grand Central, significant enough to have played host to President Woodrow Wilson and Sherlock Holmes creator Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and complete with its own private train track. Byrd knew his time there would coincide with that of former governor Al Smith, who was on another floor planning the Empire State Building. ..Byrd and Smith knew one another through friends and often asked asked each other’s highly publicized progress in the Biltmore’s elevators and lobby.”
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