Here's another #InsideTheArchives post from our Facebook page, this one focusing on people whose lives intersected with Fuller Lodge: the waitresses of The Lodge hotel. In our society it is rare to live and work in the same location (although this is now the case for many us during this time of COVID-19). The Lodge had a restaurant and bar which served meals to its guests. The waitresses who served the meals for The Lodge lived there as well. There is even some mystery involved because we have conflicting sources about where the staff bedrooms were located in Fuller Lodge.
By SHARON SNYDER
Los Alamos Historical Society
Fuller Lodge, the venerable log building and the heart of our town, was actually named Edward P. Fuller Lodge, and this is the story of how it got its name.
The Lodge, as it is called most of the time, was designed by noted Santa Fe architect John Gaw Meem and opened its doors to Los Alamos Ranch School students, masters and staff in 1929, but the story that inspired the name began several years earlier.
The Ranch School was the dream of Ashley Pond Jr., but dreams almost always need money to become a reality. In the beginning, Pond partnered with friend and homesteader Harold Brook, who agreed to develop the school on his land. However, Brook was fighting tuberculosis, and it became clear that the partnership arrangement couldn’t last, so Brook sold out to Pond.
Understanding that he couldn’t run the school alone, Pond hired director A.J. Connell, a forest ranger and Boy Scout master in Santa Fe.
They made the most of some existing wooden buildings and constructed a two-story log structure that became known as the Big House, but the dream soon required more. It was clear that more money would be needed to pay the mortgage and develop the school.
Pond was the son of a noted attorney in Michigan and had grown up in a circle of wealthy and prominent people, so he returned to his boyhood home to find a benefactor. In Grand Rapids he found the right man in Philo Fuller, a longtime friend of the Pond family.
-Fuller was the mayor of Grand Rapids and a successful businessman in lumber and furniture manufacturing. He was willing to enter into a financial agreement, but he tailored the deal to also benefit his son, Edward Philo Fuller.
Edward had polio as a child, and it left him with impaired speech and a weak leg. The defects made him feel uncomfortable in his family’s business and social landscape. In Ashley Pond’s request, Philo Fuller saw a way to help his son as well as his friend.
By HEATHER MCCLENAHAN
Los Alamos Historical Society
Few buildings induce the wonder and awe that Fuller Lodge evokes in first-time visitors.
The majestic, three-story building of upright logs is the heart and soul of the community of Los Alamos. From its construction during the days of the Los Alamos Ranch School through today, it always has been.
The building was designed by John Gaw Meem, a famous Southwestern architect known today as the father of Santa Fe’s Style. He used the Big House, the Ranch School’s dormitory, which also had upright log construction, as his model.
These articles are written by the Los Alamos Historical Society Staff. Many of these articles were originally published by the