The Highgate Manor was built in 1818 by Captain Steve Keyes along with The Manor Mayfair, which was located directly across the green from the Manor. During the period of the Civil War the Manor was used as a stop on the Underground Railroad with tunnels running from under the house to the river. These tunnels are still in existence today under the Manor.
The Keyes family owned the Manor until the year 1870 when the home was sold to Dr. Henry Baxter. As was the custom of the day, Dr. Baxter opened his practice in his home, The Highgate Manor. Bloodstains from his operating table are still visible on the wood floor in what is now the Library. It was during this time that the legend of the Highgate Manor started to grow. Many of Dr. Baxter’s children did not live past the age of ten and died of strange illnesses. The town’s people believed that the good doctor was using his children for experiments and that after their death they have since remained in the house to this day.
Highgate Manor InnAfter the death of Dr. Baxter in 1898 the Manor was taken over by Philip Schmitt and in 1917 the Manor was turned into an exclusive vacation resort. With business becoming an incredible success, Manor Mayfair was again added as part of the Highgate Manor along with the Manor Annex, and a brand new dance hall. This hall was billed as the largest and best dance hall in the North. Due to the exclusiveness of the Manor Al Capone as well as many other high profile dignitaries frequented the Manor Estate and its speakeasy hidden in a cave beneath The Manor.
The Manor continued as a vacation destination during the 1940s. During this time Benny Goodman and other stars of the Big Band Era regularly performed in the Manor’s ballroom specifically added for this purpose. Unfortunately, on May 22, 1950 part of The Manor’s estate, the Manor Mayfair, was destroyed by fire set when a worker started burning leaves to close to the Manor.
Guests often report a strange presence in the basement bar (named after past visitor, Al Capone). Ghostly voices have been heard and some believe that the ghosts of Dr. Baxter’s children still haunt the Inn.