In 1924, the Pierce Petroleum Company, owner William Clay Pierce embarked upon a business enterprise to link the chain of Pierce-Pennant gas stations with motor hotels and restaurants. The plan was to establish roadside hotels and taverns approximately every 125 miles on Route 66, connecting Chicago and Los Angeles, and Route 50 to Jefferson City. In July 1928, the company opened the Pierce-Pennant Motor Hotel in Springfield, Missouri. This first motor hotel complex included a bus terminal, restaurant, soda fountain, restrooms, gas station, automobile shop and car washing facilities. Other Pierce-Pennant hotels and taverns opened thereafter in Rolla & Columbia, Missouri and in Miami & Tulsa, Oklahoma.
In 1930, Pierce abandoned this business enterprise and sold the chain to Henry Sinclair of the Sinclair Refining Company, who later renamed the chain the Sinclair-Pennant Hotels. Three years later, the Missouri Highway Department moved Route 66 to the Meramec Valley, altering the business traffic for these hotels and taverns, turning many of them into white elephants.
Here is a postcard of a Sinclair Pennant Tavern and a fork & menu I have in my collection