J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott photograph collection, 1890s-1980s  PDF  XML

Overview of the Collection

Marriott Family
J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott photograph collection
1890s-1980s (inclusive)
5 boxes  :  20 negatives, 32 slides, 602 prints
Collection Number
The J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott photograph collection portraits of J. Willard Marriott, members of the Marriott family, and various business associates. The collection also contains photographs of restaurants and hotels and photographs of the Marriott farm.
University of Utah Libraries, Special Collections.
Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library
University of Utah
295 South 1500 East
Salt Lake City, UT
Telephone: 801-581-8863
Access Restrictions

Twenty-four hour advanced notice encouraged. Materials must be used on-site. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Biography of John Willard Marriott

John Willard Marriott was born to Hyrum Willard Marriott and Ellen Morris at Marriott Settlement, Utah, September 17, 1900. He was the second of eight children and spent his early years helping with the family sheep ranching business. In 1918 he left for Connecticut and Vermont to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

When he returned from his mission he attended Weber College from 1920 to 1922, and later enrolled at the University of Utah. In order to pay for his education, he worked during the summers selling woolen goods to lumberjacks in the Pacific Northwest. He graduated from the University of Utah in 1926, and spent the following year teaching English and working as treasurer of Weber College.

Mr. Marriott purchased the rights to sell Allen and Wright (A & W) root beer in Washington, D.C., and on May 20, 1927, he opened a root beer stand with Hugh Colton. A few weeks later he traveled back to Salt Lake City to marry Alice Sheets, June 9, 1927, in the Salt Lake Temple.

After the wedding, they returned immediately to Washington, D.C., and a few weeks later they opened their second shop. By winter they realized that they would need something other than cold drinks in order to keep the business running. However, it was prohibited to sell food in A & W franchises. The Marriotts received permission from Allen and Wright to add hot food to the menu. They decided to specialize in Mexican and Southwestern food, and the chef at the Mexican embassy graciously supplied them with a few recipes. Because the Marriotts were worried about the risk of losing their patronage if they closed the shop to make the changes needed for food service, they made preparations ahead of time so that it took only one night to convert the store. They finished just in time to open the next morning as The Hot Shoppe.

In 1928 Hugh Colton decided to sell his half of the business and return to Utah. The Marriotts purchased the other half of the business for $5,000.00 and they became sole owners of The Hot Shoppe.

Photograph number The 1930s were a time of tremendous growth for the company and the Marriott family. The Marriotts' first child, J. Willard Marriott, Jr., was born in 1932. By 1934 the corporation had added drive-in restaurants with "running boys" that provided customers with in-car service. In addition, the Marriotts had pioneered the world's first in-flight airline catering service. In 1939 the Marriotts' second son, Richard Edwin Marriott, was born.

Much of the company's expansion efforts came to fruition in the 1940s and 1950s. The corporation built several new restaurants and opened numerous industrial, defense plant, and school cafeterias. A corporate recipe card system was developed and a test kitchen was built to standardize food preparation and portions. In 1957 the corporation expanded into the hotel industry with the first Marriott Motor Hotel in Arlington, Virginia.

The company continued to grow under Mr. Marriott's control until 1964, when he turned over the company presidency to his son, J. Willard Marriott, Jr. Mr. Marriott continued to be heavily involved with the corporation as chairman of the board.

However, corporate affairs did not wholly absorb Mr. Marriott's interest during these years. He was actively involved in religious, academic, political, and community organizations throughout his life.

He played an important part in the administration of the affairs of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon) in Washington, D.C. In 1948 he was called to be president of the Washington Stake, a position he held until 1957, when he was appointed chairman of the General Chaplains Committee of the Mormon Church. He was actively involved with the Nauvoo Restoration Project and had a keen interest in the archaeology of the Book of Mormon. He also was instrumental in raising money for many building funds and served as an important liaison to church headquarters in Salt Lake City for the construction and dedication of the Washington D.C. Temple.

The Marriotts retained close ties with academic institutions in Utah. In 1969 they made a substantial gift to the newly opened University of Utah Library which was subsequently named the Marriott Library. They later made another generous gift, this time to Brigham Young University, for the Marriott Activities Center which was dedicated in 1973. Mr. Marriott received honorary doctorate degrees from both institutions, as well as from Weber State College.

As a loyal Republican, Mr. Marriott formed close friendships in the national political arena. His list of friends included Dwight D. Eisenhower (a frequent customer of the Hot Shoppes), Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan. He was appointed by Nixon to chair both the 1969 and 1973 inaugural committees and served as chairman of the executive committee for Honor America Day for many years, along with committee members Billy Graham and Bob Hope. The Marriotts were life-long contributors to the Republican National Committee and supporters of George Romney and Richard Nixon's bids for the presidential nomination. Mr. Marriott also served on the board of governors for the United Service Organizations.

Mr. Marriott was always held in great esteem by his colleagues. He served as president of both the Washington Restaurant Association and the National Restaurant Association, and received numerous awards in the food and lodging industries. Throughout his life, he was affiliated with many business and civic organizations including the Burning Tree Club, the Indian Creek Country Club, Bald Peak Colony Club, Columbia Country Club, Capitol Hill Club, Federal City Council, the Washington Admirals, the National Association of Manufacturers, Riggs National Bank, the American Historical and Cultural Society, American Motors Corporation, Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Company, and the Acacia Mutual Life Insurance Company.

Mr. Marriott died of a heart attack on August 13, 1985, at his summer home in New Hampshire.


Alice Sheets Marriott was born October 19, 1907, in Salt Lake City, Utah to Alice Taylor and Edwin Spencer Sheets. She graduated with honors from the University of Utah in 1927 at age 19. She was a member of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and Chi Omega sorority.

Two days after graduation she married J. Willard Marriott in the Salt Lake Temple and moved to Washington, D.C. to help with the A & W root beer stand he had opened a few weeks before. Shortly after her arrival, they opened a second stand. Mrs. Marriott's early responsibilities included collecting accounts and taking receipts to the bank. Although the business was quite successful during the summer months, it was apparent that in the approaching winter months they would need more than root beer to keep the business afloat. Food service in the franchise was prohibited, but the Marriotts were able to secure special permission from Allen and Wright to add food to the menu.

The Marriotts discussed the idea of serving Mexican and Southwestern food, but neither had any experience in food preparation of this kind. Since Mrs. Marriott had majored in Spanish in college, she was able to talk to the chef at the Mexican embassy who provided her with a few recipes and the address of a Mexican food supply house in San Antonio, Texas.

Photograph number Mrs. Marriott practiced cooking the recipes while Mr. Marriott made preparations to modify the stand for food service. They were determined to have everything ready in order to change the stand as quickly as possible, so they wouldn't lose their patronage. In the fall of 1927 the changes were made and the stand was transformed overnight. The Hot Shoppe was now in business, with Mrs. Marriott as the chef.

Photograph number In 1930, Alice Taylor Sheets, Mrs. Marriott's mother, married Senator Reed Smoot and with that marriage came the Marriotts' inclusion in the political circles of Washington, D.C. In addition to these social activities, Mrs. Marriott continued to be very involved with the business, even after the birth of their sons, J. Willard Marriott, Jr. in 1932 and Richard Edwin Marriott in 1939. She was instrumental in key decision-making which affected the company's growth and success, and even helped design and decorate company restaurants and hotels and scouted out new locations for company expansion.

Photograph number Mrs. Marriott's political activities were varied and extensive throughout her life. From 1955 to 1957 she served as assistant treasurer for the League of Republican Women for the District of Columbia, and in 1957 was appointed vice president of the organization, a post she held for two years. She continued to affiliate with the League of Republican Women, serving in numerous positions in subsequent years. In 1959 she was named to the District of Columbia Republican State Executive Committee. She was a member of the Republican National Committee from 1959 to 1976, and during those years she served as vice chairman and as an executive committee member. She served on the Arrangements Committee for the Republican National Conventions of 1960, 1964, 1968, and 1972, and was treasurer of the conventions in 1964, 1968, and 1972. She was vice chairman of the 1969 Inaugural Committee and honorary chairman of the 1973 Inaugural Committee.

Photograph number In addition to her political responsibilities, Mrs. Marriott was actively involved with various organizations in the community, including the Goodwill Industries Guild, the Capital Speakers Club, the International Neighbors Club, the Arthritis and Rheumatism Association of Metropolitan Washington, and the National Advisory Committee for Children and Youth. She also helped found the Welcome to Washington International Club.

Photograph number The nation's arts community benefitted greatly from Mrs. Marriott's service and philanthropy. In 1971 she was appointed chairman of the Advisory Committee on the Arts for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and in 1972 was appointed to the board of trustees. She was an honorary trustee, having served two 10-year terms on the board and executive and finance committees. She also served on the board of directors of the National Ballet Society, and was a former member of the Women's Committee of the National Symphony Orchestra.

Photograph number Mrs. Marriott's dedication to academic excellence was manifest not only in her college years, but throughout her life. She held two honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees, one from Mount Vernon College and one from the University of Utah. The University of Utah has been the recipient of the Marriott's support and generosity for many years. In 1989 the new dance building was dedicated as the Alice Sheets Marriott Center for Dance in recognition of her particular interest in the arts. For the Marriott Library's twentieth anniversary in 1988, Mrs. Marriott made a sizeable donation, and in the tradition of the family, her son, J. Willard Marriott, Jr., chaired the university's capital campaign which far exceeded its goal of one hundred and fifty million dollars. At the conclusion of the campaign, the Marriott's made a significant donation to the library.

Photograph number Mrs. Marriott's counsel and advice were sought by various individuals and organizations throughout her life. She was a member of the American Newspaper Women's Association, the Capitol Hill Club, the Washington Club, the 1925 F Street Club, and was named to the honorary board of the National Committee for Prevention of Child Abuse. She served as a member of the National Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases Advisory Council and was on the board of directors of the Arthritis Foundation. She was also an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Before her death on April 17, 2000, she was as director emeritus of Marriott International Incorporated and Host Marriott Corporation, having served one of the longest periods of active board service in American business history. Her oldest son, J. Willard Marriott, Jr., is the chairman of Marriott International and her younger son, Richard E. Marriott, is chairman of Host Marriott.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Photograph number The photographs in this collection document the life and career of the philanthropist owner of restaurants, the Marriott hotel chain, and the namesake of the J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah. The collection consists mainly of photograph of business related images, portraits, and family and personal photographs. Included are images from the "Hot Shoppes" restaurants, the Marriott hotels, and other business ventures; former President Richard M. Nixon, and other business images. Some personal images are also included. Unfortunately, few of the images are labeled and few of the individuals identified. Where the subject of the photograph is obvious, this information will be included in the item description. If there is a label or inscription on the photograph, it will be included in the item description in quotes "__". The biographies of J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott found below are adapted from the Register of the Papers of J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott, MS 164.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

The library does not claim to control copyright for all materials in the collection. An individual depicted in a reproduction has privacy rights as outlined in Title 45 CFR, part 46 (Protection of Human Subjects). For further information, please review the J. Willard Marriott Library’s Use Agreement and Reproduction Request forms.

Preferred Citation

Collection Name, Collection Number, Box Number, Folder Number. Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library, The University of Utah.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Collection is arranged topically in alphabetical order.

Acquisition Information

Gift of J. Willard Marriott.

Processing Note

Processed by Mary White in 1993 and by Roy Webb in 2001.

Separated Materials

Manuscript materials were transferred to the J. Willard and Alice Sheets Marriott papers (MS 0164).

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Business photographsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description
Box Folder
1 1
Business-Amusement Parks
Photograph number 1-2: Artist sketches
1 2
Business-Corporate: Associations, Conventions, Meetings
Photograph number 1-3: Dallas Opening, 1955Photograph number 4: St. Louis Marriott, 50th AnniversaryPhotograph number 5: signing papersPhotograph number 6: Empty board room with table and chairsPhotograph number 7: Regional Convention, Washington Restaurant Association, Statler Hotel, December 2, 1948, Washington D.C.Photograph number 8: Members of N.A.M.Photograph number 9: National Restaurant Association Board of Directors, circa 1970Photograph number 10-11: Donald J. Hardenbrook (N.A.M.'s 1962 president and chairman of American Creosoting Corporation) and J. W. Marriott (president of Hot Shoppes Inc. and new director of N.A.M.)Photograph number 12: Commissioners Planning Advisory Council, circa 1960Photograph number 13: Unknown
1 3
Business-Corporate: portraits (buildings and people)
Photograph number 1: Phineas II in Springfield, Virginia (dinner house)Photograph number 2: Los Angeles Marriott HotelPhotograph number 3: Marriott In-Flite Services (loading food service onto a TWA plane)Photograph number 4: Marriott's Great America family entertainment centerPhotograph number 5: Stella Solaris B cruise ship of Sun Line.Photograph number 6: J.W. Marriott, founder and Chairman of the Board, Marriott Corp. and Alice Sheets Marriott, Vice President and Director Marriott Corporation.Photograph number 7: J.W. Marriott Jr. President and Chief Executive Officer Marriott Corp.Photograph number 10: James E. Durbin, President Marriott Hotels, Inc.Photograph number 11: J.H. Best, Jr. General Manager, Los Angeles Marriott Hotel.
1 4
Business-Hot Shoppes and Restaurants
Photograph number 1-3: Early Hot ShoppesPhotograph number 4-20: Hot ShoppesPhotograph number 21-24: 35th Anniversary DinnerPhotograph number 25-26: Vending machinesPhotograph number 27-31: Restaurants and coffee shopPhotograph number 32: Negative made from news articlePhotograph number 33: Hot Shoppe in IranPhotograph number 34: Four slidesPhotograph number 35: Twenty slidesPhotograph number 36-47: Photo book of model Hot ShoppesPhotograph number 48: Hot Shoppes
1 5
Business-Motor Hotels
Photograph number 1:Postcard, Washington D.C.Photograph number 2-3: ExteriorsPhotograph number 4-6: InteriorsPhotograph number 7: Ice rinkPhotograph number 8: PoolPhotograph number 9: Hotel modelPhotograph number 10-11: SketchesPhotograph number 12: ExteriorsPhotograph number 13-15: Sketches, interiorPhotograph number 16: Exteriors
1 6
Business-Motor Hotels
Photograph number 1: SketchPhotograph number 2: European inspection tour, 1971Photograph number 3-7: Saddle Brook, N.J. hotel openingPhotograph number 8: J. W. Marriott receives Religious Heritage of America Award, 1973Photograph number 9: European inspection tour, 1971Photograph number 10: Dallas Marriott, 1963Photograph number 11-12: Mr. and Mrs. Marriott look over a model of hotelPhotograph number 13-16: Stanely HotelPhotograph number 17: Eight slides
1 7
Business-Motor Hotels
Photograph number 1-17: Lincolnshire Resort ground lifting
1 8-9
Business-Shoreham Party

Ceremonies, Awards, and EventsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
2 1
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Arts
Photograph number Disney World New World Orchestra, circa 1971
2 2
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Arts
Photograph number "The Eagle of Freedom"
2 3
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Arts
Photograph number 1-2: SculpturePhotograph number 3-4: Advertisements for the Dance Theatre of HarlemPhotograph number 5-6: Model for the National Cultural Center, Washington D.C.
2 4
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Commencement
Photograph number 1-2: Alice Marriott, Honorary Degree, University of Utah, 1974
2 5
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Defense
Photograph number 1: AM's new Muskrat takes to water, new military vehicle (2 photos on same sheet)Photograph number 2: Collage of Defense Orientation Conference Association
2 6-9
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Defense
Photograph number "Joint Civilian Orientation Conference, 1954"
2 10
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-Honor America Program
Photograph number 1: Bob HopePhotograph number 2: Loretta LynnPhotograph number 3: Erik EstradaPhotograph number 4: Kirk DouglasPhotograph number 5: Certificate of AppreciationPhotograph number 6: J.W. Marriott Jr. giving awardPhotograph number 7-8: In front of White HousePhotograph number 9-11: Info from "Proudly they came" two-record LP album
2 11
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-National Prayer Breakfast
Photograph number 2: J. W. Marriott Sr. giving invocation or benediction
2 12
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-White House
Photograph number 1: Negative, President and Mrs. Hoover, White House Invitation, January 15, 1931.Photograph number 2: White House, March 1947, interior with peoplePhotograph number 3: "Christmas at the White House", exterior
2 13
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-White House
Photograph number Inaugural Events
2 14-15
Ceremonies, Awards and Events-White House
10 April 1972

L.D.S. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) Church, Marriott Family photographsReturn to Top

Container(s) Description
Box Folder
3 1
L.D.S. Church
Photograph number 1-5: Chevy Chase Ward Meeting HousePhotograph number 6-9: Salt Lake CityPhotograph number 10-31: Color negatives of Temple Square, Salt Lake City, Utah
3 2
L.D.S. Church
Photograph number 1-6: Washington D.C.Photograph number 7-11: L.D.S. (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) World Fair Expo.
3 3-4
Marriott Family
3 5-6
Marriott Family
Photograph number J. W. Marriott Sr., portraits
3 7
Marriott friends and others
Photograph number 17-23: Removed from Ms 164 Box 205, December 52-March 55Photograph number 24-25: Removed from Ms 164 Box 204, Miscellaneous 1940sPhotograph number 26-33: Removed from Ms 164 Box 200, book 2 1931-1940
3 8
Marriott friends and others
3 9
Marriott friends and others
Photograph number 18-20: On same sheetPhotograph number 21-23: On same sheet
3 10
Marriott friends and others
Photograph number 1-21

Marriott Farm, miscellaneousReturn to Top

Container(s) Description
Box Folder
4 1-3
Marriott Farm
Folder 1: Photograph number 1-20Folder 2: Photograph number 1-19Folder 3: Photograph number 1-11
4 4
Marriott Farm, tulips
Folder 1: Photograph number 1-6
4 5
Photograph number 1: OperationPhotograph number 2-5: ResidencePhotograph number 6: Little King Ranch ColoradoPhotograph number 7-8: Fairfield Farm, May 26, 1961Photograph number 9-10: ResidencePhotograph number 11-12: ?Photograph number 13: HotelPhotograph number 14: Post Card, Great Oak Lodge, Chestertown, MarylandPhotograph number 15-16: HotelPhotograph number 17: Newport Dunes Aquatic Park, Newport Beach, CaliforniaPhotograph number 18: Salt Lake Sears signPhotograph number 19-25: Boy Scouts of America, Lt. Gen. Lewis B. Hershey receiving award.(No.26-119 do not exist. The numbers given to these negatives do not correspond with the amount of material in this folder.) No.120-137 negatives stored separatelyPhotograph number 120-122: Ice cream productionPhotograph number 123-128: Baked goods productionPhotograph number 129-134: Food preparationPhotograph number 135-137: Officers-cafeteria

OversizeReturn to Top

Container(s) Description
Box Folder
5 1
Photograph number 1: Hot Shoppe Restaurant. Connecticut Avenue in the Northwest of Washinton D.C, circa 1936Photograph number 2: Man with a cowboy hat in a car on the farmPhotograph number 3: 39th Junior Board of Executives, Marriott Corporation

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Personal Names

  • Marriott, J. Willard(John Willard), 1900-1985--Photographs

Corporate Names

  • Marriott Corporation--History--Photographs
  • Marriott Hot Shoppes--History--Photographs

Form or Genre Terms

  • Photographic prints--1890-1980
  • Photographic prints--Color--1950-1980
  • Portrait photographs--1890-1980