S. Durward "Steve" Hoag, Class of 1923
Hotelier, Civic Leader, Photographer, Historian
Stephen Durward Hoag arrived in Marietta in 1918 and entered Marietta College the following year. In 1922, he began assisting his father, the manager of the new Hotel Lafayette. Father and son later entered into a partnership as owners and managers of the Lafayette Motor Hotel. Upon his father's death in 1944, Steve assumed control of the establishment.
Hoag engineered innovations and improvements making the hotel a regional landmark. He was a tourism pioneer and visionary recognizing the importance of automobiles and the necessity of hotels to provide parking facilities.
Hoag is credited during his term as president of the Marietta City Council as being the person most responsible for the routing of Interstate 77 near Marietta. One of the city's foremost civic leaders, he served three years as president of the Marietta Chamber of Commerce, was the first recipient of the Marietta Jaycees' Distinguished Citizen Award, and was named Mr. Pioneer Spirit during the city's 175th birthday celebration. In 1977, he received numerous other recognitions and honors, including the naming of a Marietta street after him.
Hoag's writing and photographs promoted Marietta as well as preserved its history. The Marietta Times' readers looked forward to his paid ads that took the form of a newspaper column, "Round and Round Below the RR Tracks," which included commentaries on a variety of subjects. Hoag retired and sold the Lafayette in 1971. He died in Marietta on Oct. 18, 1982.