September 8, 1881, the “St. Charles Demokrat” reported that Dr. Hampson Strother Clay (thus H. S. Clay House) intended to become a physician in Augusta.
Before locating in Augusta, Dr. Clay, an 1873 graduate of the Missouri Medical College, had lived in Darst Bottom where he practiced medicine for about eight years. He became known as one of the leading physicians of that part of Missouri.
Dr. Clay built this Augusta home in 1885 for his second wife, Marie Koch Clay. They then began raising their family of four sons and five daughters. Soon after the birth of their ninth child, Dr. Clay passed away leaving Marie to raise their family. All of the sons eventually became doctors, as well as their sons. One of the daughters, Mabel, became a nurse and two of the daughters became teachers.
Marie lived in the home from 1887 until September, 1948 when she moved to Poplar Bluff, Missouri to live with her son, Dr. Hampson Strother Clay. Marie passed away in December of 1955 at the age of 92. The property originally encompassed one square city block containing Dr. Clay’s office at the corner of Walnut and Ferry, a horse barn, an orchard and their residence.
The home was eventually sold out of the Clay family in 1956 for $5,500.00. The next owners added the “first” bathroom and central heating to the house. In 1986, restoration was begun to restore it to its former grandeur by a general contractor.
The current proprietors purchased the home in 1991 and began the final phase of restoration. Alan Buehre, a graduate of Washington University and University of Denver, along with his wife Leigh, have extensive culinary and hospitality experience. Together, they have made the H. S. Clay House Augusta’s “most elegant Country Victorian Bed and Breakfast”.
The H. S. Clay House Bed and Breakfast is located in the “Heart of the Missouri Wine Country”.