Chronicler: Mathilda Jauregui

Interviewer: Gretchen Holbert

 

0:00 Talking about the Basque country, she went to work at 14 years of age. She worked from 7 in the morning to 9 at night (14 hour day!). Came to America in 1908, April 1. She left from Le Havre, France and landed in Ellis Island, New York. From New York she went to Elko, all she had to eat was half salami and a dozen eggs. At one point she missed her train. Originally she was supposed to go to the Overland Hotel to work. When she got off the train in Elko, she was taken to the Telescope Hotel.

 

10:01 By June 3 the same year she was married. In all it cost her $200 to get to Elko from the Basque country. Talking about the people in the Telescope, she worked with three other maids there. There was no bathroom in the hotel at the time, had to go to the outhouse or use a chamber pot. Had to wash the clothes in a washbasin. There was no basement in the Telescope. Talking about how the people passed the time in the hotel, her husband played accordion. They paid $25 per month room and board to stay at the hotel (3 meals a day). In 1910 she and her husband built the Star Hotel and ran it by themselves. In all she stayed at the Telescope for 2 years before she and her husband started building the Star. When they first opened the Star, they hired a black man to cook, then a woman (Ramona?).

 

20:58 Matilda liked working with women more than men. In 1922 they sold the Star Hotel to a group of men for $13,000, but in 1942 they bought it back from Frank Arrascada for $15,000. In between the group of men and Frank, the Star was also owned by Joe Corta. The second time around the Star wasn't easier to run, harder instead. Mostly she was concerned about the purchasing (rationing and points). They mostly just broke even in the hotel for a while and Matilda began not wanting to run the hotel anymore. She was getting tired, not enjoying it anymore. She and her husband decided to sell the hotel eventually, to the Bengoa's. They sold the Star for $18,000 in the end.

 

Side 2

 

0:00 After they sold the Star, Matilda and her husband decided to go into business again. Bought the mason's meeting building and decided to build a nightclub there.