There is an interesting story behind the opening of the first youth hostel in the United States:
...in 1934, Isabel and Monroe Smith opened the first U.S. youth hostel in Northfield [Massachusetts]. The young couple had discovered hosteling during a trip to Europe and had become devoted disciples of the German founder of the movement, Richard Schirrmann. Hoping to spread the popular European practice of providing inexpensive lodgings to young folk as they explored the world, the Smiths quickly built a New England network of hostels. They traveled the U.S. introducing the principles of youth hosteling. Although they believed they would foster intercultural understanding and community, the Smiths encountered stiff resistance from those who feared that they were secretly associated with the Nazis. Public officials and corporations withdrew their support, but the Smiths persisted and the hostel movement in the U.S. took root.