As one of the most romantic and historic inns in the Green Mountains of southern Vermont, the Kedron Valley Inn has a long and varied past. History ebbs and flows through every post and beam, and every room has a story to tell. Dark wood furniture and antique decor remain the staples of the Inn today, and the foundation and framework of one of Vermont's oldest inns hasn't changed in more than 185 years.
In 1822, a store for gristmill workers and mill owners in South Woodstock Village was built by Richard Ransom, Jr. (this is the oldest building in the present Inn complex, now known as the Tavern Building.) The local newspaper reported that the building was dedicated with a gathering of singers from the region "who converged for the occasion to celebrate the completion of this structure." The third store in the Village, it became a social center of the community, providing services from banking to barbering, and the trading and bartering of goods, as well as home of the first post office in South Woodstock.
In 1828, John Quincy Adam's son, John, was married at the White House, Andrew Jackson was elected the seventh President of the United States and the Main House was constructed as a dwelling for the Ransom family. Originally called the Ransom House, it was also used as an Inn and tavern.
The handsome Federal Style building reflected the architecture of the era as settlers' cabins and small frame houses were being replaced with substantial brick homes. The community had numerous mills along the banks of the Kedron Stream and it was an active, thriving, self-sufficient agricultural community of enterprising, enlightened and educated citizens.
In 1848, the famous National Hall was built connecting the Main Building to the Tavern Building. This was a large auditorium where dances, concerts, parties, debates, political meetings, public exercises and many other activities were held.
Unfortunately, this structure was eventually lost in the early 1900's. Later in the 19th century, both rumor and historical documents indicate that the Inn was a stop on the eastern Underground Railroad for fugitive slaves.
Through the early 1900s, the Inn was known at The Colonial Inn and spacious porches with columns and pilasters, plus a continuous dormer on the third floor, were added to the Main Building. Then, in the middle of the 20th century, the property was renamed the Kedron Valley Inn and the name has stayed to this day. From 1960-1985 the Inn was owned by Paul Kendall, an eighth generation South Woodstock resident. The Log Lodge was added, a swimming and fishing pond was created and the original Tavern Building, which had housed the bar and dining facilities, was converted entirely into guest rooms.
The Inn is currently owned and operated by a Vermont based hotel company specialized in combining the warmth of hyper local elegance with the sophistication of world class luxury. The appeal of "relaxing in the country" is as strong as ever, and throughout the history of the Kedron Valley Inn its owners and proprietors have considered themselves caretakers of history -- maintaining the integrity of the buildings and surrounding grounds for more almost two centuries.