A railroad boom started in 1906 and in December of that year, the first locomotive from Chicago and St. Paul/Minneapolis pulled into Crofton, Nebraska. Crofton was the turnaround town for the railroad and served many travelers and salespeople. By March 1910, the thriving town had forty businesses but lacked a nice hotel. Local entrepreneur Nick Michaelis proposed to the city council that if they would supply a water line and electricity to his property, he would build a modern, state-of-the-art hotel. The council agreed and in 1911, construction began, with the hotel completed in 1912. Mr. Michaelis named the hotel, “The Argo”, as a tribute to the ship used to transport his ancestors to America. The words “Argo Hotel” were imprinted in bricks on the upper east side of the building and can still be seen to this day.
The hotel was operated for a number of years under different owners and at one time the name was changed to The New Meridian Hotel. It was then sold and became the New Meridian Health Clinic where hot bath therapy as well as massage and physical therapy treatments were performed.
In 1962, the hotel was purchased by a local doctor and the premises converted into a medical clinic. The lobby served as a waiting room and the remainder of the first floor area included his office and living quarters. The upper floor of the hotel was closed off and left vacant.
In 1994, after the building had been vacant for a number of years, Crofton natives, Sandra McDonald and Jerry Bogner—brother and sister partners—bought the old hotel and began its complete renovation and restoration to its original glory with modern amenities added. The blueprints to the original Argo Hotel were exhumed from old town records and painstakingly adhered to throughout the restoration project. The Argo Hotel re-opened again on Dec. 31, 1994.
In Jan, 2016, another Crofton native, Sandy Thunker, purchased the hotel and operates it today as a bed and breakfast, steakhouse and lounge.