To say that the Hotel Lester building has an ethnically-varied and colorful past would be a major understatement. Like all property in the Gaslamp, the original owner of the lots from 1301-1319 H St. (now 401-417 Market St.) was Alonzo E. Horton. He sold the property, lots A and B, to William and Mary Smith in 1868, but regained the property in 1872. On Nov. 11, 1872, he sold lot A to William T. McNealy and James McCoy for $1,000. Both are important figures in early San Diego history.