Vulcan Motor Lodge
The motel featured 67 air-conditioned rooms (singles, doubles and suites), each with its own telephone and tiled bath with combination tub/shower. The motel offered maid and porter service and a playground.
In 1951, the motel was called the "Waldorf Astoria of Tourist Courts" by Tourist Court Journal. In 1953, the motel was purchased by Mac McGrady and renamed the St Francis Hotel Courts as an homage to the St Francis Hotel in San Francisco, California. The property became part of the Alamo Plaza chain, founded by McGrady's uncle, Lee Torrance in Waco, Texas in 1929.
The motel was expanded in 1960 to a total of 112 rooms at a cost of $600,000. The renovation included a heated swimming pool, a new King's Inn Restaurant, meeting rooms, and a renovated entrance. Charles McCauley designed the addition, which was built by G. W. Hallmark and Sons.
The motel was later town down and eventually replaced with Independence Plaza.
- "Plush St. Francis addition to swing open doors Oct. 23" (October 1960) Birmingham News - via Birmingham Rewound
- Jakle, John A., Keith A. Sculle, and Jefferson S. Rogers (1996) The Motel in America. Boston: Johns Hopkins University Press
- Alamo Plaza Hotel Courts - Birmingham at highwayhost.org