History of the Inn at the Falls
The “Main Inn” house was built in 1870 by a local named John Adair, then later purchased by a local Judge named William Crosby Mahaffy.
Judge Mahaffy was a larger than life character in Bracebridge, turning the home into a centre of local politics. So even though he died away from the home, while visiting England for medical reasons, the staff is convinced he came back to the Inn at the Falls. We see it more like his energy never left.
Seen in the pub, or recognized by the smell of cigar smoke lingering inside the main parlour.
The house was a family home until the early 1900’s when it served as a youth home. In 1943, the house was converted to an Inn and went through renovations, including a major one in 1955 after a fire.
The Niven’s – –
The Inn at the Falls is host to many ghosts, including that of former owner Jackie Niven. With her husband Jim, they ran the “Holiday House”, a previous version of the hotel in the 1970’s. Jackie died of cancer inside the main house, and is said to remain where she loved.
It had an energy, picked up by Jim’s mother, who lived with the Niven’s in the home. She said, “This place has a mind of its own. If it doesn’t like you, you stay will not be long” The next owners proved that true with lots of strong activity, including ashtrays flying off tables.
During the active period in the 1980’s, an office manager named Cathy ran into Jackie Niven. She said (from Haunted Ontario by Terry Boyle)…
“I had just reached the corridor when a woman suddenly appeared in the doorway. She was so vivid. I could describe everything she was wearing. A small woman with shoulder-length dark brown hair. Would have been in her 40s. I just looked at her and within seconds she vanished into thin air”
After telling this experience to a housekeeper, Cathy was told “You just described Jackie”
“Group of Three” Ghosts – –
A “group of three” ghosts haunt the main building, something the owners do not shy from. From the Inn at the Falls website…
“The Inn is a “ghostly” Inn, home to numerous ghosts, three of whom are affectionately know as Charlie, Sarah and Bob. They are friendly spirits and tend to keep mostly to themselves.
Bob inhabits the kitchen area, Charlie the upstairs corridors and Sarah can be heard rustling through the “Carriage Room” on occasion.”
Room 105 – –
In room 105 of the “main house”, an unknown woman is seen just before strange things begin to happen. A man staying at the Inn at the Falls in room 105 returned for the night. He walked into the room and found a woman sitting in the wing-back chair by the window.
He apologized and quickly backed out, only to realize this was his room. Opened the door to find it empty.
Daniel’s Experience in Room 105 – –
Happened during a stay and investigation back in 2002…
“We checked in at the main house, confirming it was Room 105 that would be home for the entire stay. Couldn’t wait to start what would be a few days locked away in Bracebridge. Was at the height of my days in investigation, and was really looking forward to wandering the building late into the night seeking experiences.
“Funny the best experience would happen the moment I walking to Room 105. Walked in with my ex behind me, turned and threw the bag on the bed. Spun around to see the room, from the wind-back chair, window, desk and then the TV.
“I saw it, but it didn’t register. Then realizing what happened. I face was in the middle of the TV screen. Looked back and the screen was normal again. It was just a second, so fast my brain had to catch up.
“The face of a smiling woman in the middle of that dark screen.”
Terry Boyle’s only time seeing something move
Was conveyed to the Ghost Walks by famed Haunted Ontario author Terry Boyle (RIP, 1953-2016) over 15 years ago when he spoke at an event in Hamilton. We’ve done our best to recreate it in the great man’s word…
(During his time investigating for Haunted Ontario)
“We were taking a break, standing in the kitchen. It was just the cook and me leaning against the counter, talking. I noticed the movement first, out of the corner of my eye.
“Looked over and couldn’t believe what was happening. I know this will sound crazy, and I’m the first to say that, but it was unmistakable… as an ashtray lifted off the counter, floated by my face and landed again on the counter between the cook and myself.
“If I didn’t see it, I wouldn’t have believed it”
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