Once located directly across Saratoga Street from St. Paul’s Rectory, the Rennert Hotel was built in 1885 and demolished in 1941. H.L. Mencken (1886-1956) ate oysters and drank beer in the hotel’s restaurant and bar, and political boss John J. (Sonny) Mahon (1849-1928) gave orders to his lieutenants from a plush couch in the hotel’s lobby. Baltimore’s own hard-boiled detective novelist Dashiell Hammett (1894-1961 used the hotel for a scene of battle between political bosses in his 1931 novel The Glass Key.