My life is about living with nature – here you can live it with me!

Missing the Red House Inn

Red House Inn Barn
The Red House Inn barn

We don’t seem to miss things until they are completely vanished and all week I have been thinking about the Red House Inn and Barn. Being a photographer, I am more of a visual person and these two buildings were important landmarks that I loved passing when entering Allegany State Park (just off exit 19 on I86). For as often I spent time taking pictures “around” these buildings . . . I rarely took actual pictures of the buildings (which I regret now).

RH Inn Rose Garden 4
Historic Red House Inn photos!

My grandmother worked in the Red House Inn when my mom was a young child. At that time the Inn was a popular location for people visiting its water fountain (with goldfish) and for having one of the area’s largest Rose Gardens. You never heard people talk about the food at the restaurant. . . . just how amazing the Roses were! They had Roses growing in every possible color and were something that I would have loved to photographed back in the day. Over time this amazing garden disappeared except one Pinkster Azalea bush that happen to survive the years.

Rose Garden 5 Rose Garden 3
The old water fountain and garden!

During my childhood this building was turned into a Sports Bar/Restaurant until there were some management changes. During work times I have had the opportunity to go inside the abandoned building and could visualize many good times that people had there. Many weddings, anniversaries, reunions, first dates and or some first kisses that could have happened . . . I believe the stories people could tell would be good enough for a book.

Rose Garden 2 Rose Garden 1
The roses were the highlight of the Garden!

Now where will those Barn Swallows build their nest once they return, or where will the Pileated Woodpecker go to find his Carpenter Ants? Will the Skunk and Woodchucks find new porches to live under? How about those Red Squirrels or Flying Squirrels . . . . will they find new attics to move into? Ok, I think everyone gets the hint why these buildings were demolished. It still sucks to see the buildings departed with only its empty space remaining! It feels like I forgot to say “Goodbye”!

Red House Inn
The Red House Inn before demolition (Photo by Grace)

Thanks to Grace for allowing me to use her Red House Inn photo and to the Cushman family for use of the Historical slide photos. Now whenever someone comes to visit . . . they can meet me next to the parking lot next to nothing.

Red House Inn
And how quickly it can disappear


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29 responses

  1. It’s tough when childhood landmarks disappear. Thankfully you have photos to remember them.

    17 January 2009 at 4:48 pm

  2. Lisa at Greenbow

    I love those pictures of times past. The gardens around the Inn look lovely. It is a shame to lose such a historic place. I wonder if rose rustlers gathered the roses at some point? That would be a good story too.

    17 January 2009 at 4:54 pm

  3. It is such a shame that these buildings of our history are gone now. I love driving around Texas and seeing falling down barns and little out of the way buildings that once housed something. Florida doesn’t seem to have nearly what Texas does.

    17 January 2009 at 5:04 pm

  4. Grace

    I can’t feel too sorry for the raccooons that lost their basement “playground”–considering how badly some raccoons trashed mine.

    I will surely miss that barn!

    17 January 2009 at 8:32 pm

  5. Oh my! Is this what is known as “progress?” Were these buildings too far gone to be restored? Is something else planned for replacing what once stood? Questions, questions. I’m glad you at least have memories, Tom.

    17 January 2009 at 10:14 pm

  6. What a shame! Love the first picture!

    17 January 2009 at 10:18 pm

  7. Oh my–I liked the look of the place, and now you tell me it’s gone.
    I only “saw” it through your post, but I am drawn to old places. Somehow too many Americans seem to despise old places–and tear them down. Whatever the reason–it’s a bad choice. Save old places!

    17 January 2009 at 11:06 pm

  8. I love old buildings. I just hate seeing them disappear. In the case of my childhood house, my brother had a wrecking ball come in and replaced it with a gorgeous out-of-this-world house but it is no longer like home (for me that is.) On the upside, there were probably people that didn’t like the Red House Inn being built in the first place (like early environmentalists) and if those people are still alive they have their view of the forest back. One thing for sure, nature will always eventually claim the land back. It is just a matter of time. Thank goodness for memories and thank goodness for pictures. Those were great. It speaks of a better time (in my opinion.)

    18 January 2009 at 12:36 am

  9. It is sad to see building and places sort of fade away slowly over the years and then suddenly be obliterated by a backhoe.

    18 January 2009 at 2:49 am

  10. How sad Tom. Anytime a place rich with so much tradition and history goes by the wayside, it’s sad. Glad you have so many memories of it.

    18 January 2009 at 8:05 am

  11. That’s a real shame, in the UK we have a lot of protection over certain buildings, is it the same in the US?

    18 January 2009 at 8:13 am

  12. Oh no but I can see why they had to do it. Darn It was always a landmark I look forward to seeing when we go to the park. Always told me “I’m here!”

    18 January 2009 at 8:53 am

  13. So sad they tore this wonderful barn down. 😦
    I’m sure you have many many memories from this place.

    Thank you for your visit and comment, Tom. It’s nice “seeing” you again! xxoo

    18 January 2009 at 9:57 am

  14. I do not recall ever seeing that when I was down there. Where was it?

    18 January 2009 at 11:49 am

  15. Sarah

    I always wanted to buy the inn and turn it into a pancake house. It does indeed suck that its gone. I’ll miss it’s faded paint, woodpecker holes and all.

    18 January 2009 at 12:34 pm

  16. How incredibly sad that it could not be preserved as a historical site. No consolation, but at least you have that first photo (the one by the roadside) which I think is absolutely wonderful.
    I love your blog/site. I shall come back to visit often!

    18 January 2009 at 1:12 pm

  17. @ Lynne – thanks and it is!
    @ Lisa – those Gardens were amazing for sure! I have not heard what happened to the roses . . it was way before my time.
    @ Misti – Does seem like things do disappear but also things are popping up just as fast in places we don’t want them to!
    @ Grace – I will miss the barn also and I think the Raccoons will find a new home somewhere! LOL
    @ Mary – not sure if they were . . . too far gone but the problem more was that many people showed interest to use them but they were never used! After soo long of never being used they get worse and worse and why restore something that won’t get used?
    @ Robin – thanks and its one from a few years ago!
    @ KGMom – I agree with you but I also understand that some buildings need to come down . . . the inn for sure but I wish they would have kept the barn up! Guess the barn was a safety issue also though.
    @ Linda – memories are wonderful and my mother was telling me about her home that was destroyed.
    @ Marvin – they do disappear fast but its been expected to go for a while now!
    @ Jayne – I just miss it and it hasn’t even been a week since it has come down!
    @ Dave – We have historic preservation but like I said earlier . . if it is restored and doesn’t get used . . . why restore it? This building was in very bad shape and would have cost more to restore than build new.
    @ Toni – Like I said the Barn meant more to me than the Inn but they were safty hazards . . . . I would have to guess that the Allegany State Park Historical Society will do some kind of educational display panel to go in that place.
    @ Lisa – really was before my time . . . my mother has many more memories than I did. It really was an older building.
    @ Scienceguy – your kidding . . . must have been looking at the birds when passing . . it was right at the Red House Toll Booth where the parking lot is . . your parents will remember it.
    @ Sarah – I would have LOVED for you to do that. The woodpeckers and Barn Swallows on the building sure were a plus in my book.
    @ Molokai Girl – Thanks and once again there were many people who would have liked to do something with it but was in a horrible location to have any kind of business and make money with it. Please tell your friends and hope you subscribe!

    18 January 2009 at 3:57 pm

  18. I’m sad about it. I’ve seen only about two buildings demolished that I remember as a child…both times I gasped. Nice post – nice tribute to good memories.

    18 January 2009 at 7:09 pm

  19. Pam

    Wait!! Where was this? I didn’t get to say goodbye either! I hate seeing old buildings demolished.
    Ohhh, look at those rose gardens! I can just imagine the great photos you would have taken of them, Tom!

    19 January 2009 at 9:53 am

  20. Pam

    OMG I just read Grace’s comment. The Barn is gone, too? Argh!

    19 January 2009 at 9:54 am

  21. What a great garden! During these hard economic times, I see more historic buildings being torn down. There is one in Blacksburg, Virginia where the owner can’t afford to fix the building up and can only sell the place if the new owner can tear it down. So far, the town won’t let her tear it down but won’t buy the building either. I am hoping a wealthy person or good business (it’s on Main St.) can buy it and fix it up.

    19 January 2009 at 10:14 am

  22. Bill

    My great grandfather lived in a small building attached to the side of this barn.He was the care taker for the restaurant, he built all the gardens and maintained them. He passed away many years ago, his last name was Peters, he was from little valley. When I was a child he had a young deer that lived in the barn, it followed him around like a dog. The barn and restaurant had a special place for me, I will miss them.

    20 January 2009 at 4:59 am

  23. Oh… how sad. Does the park have plans to put up something else? Or will the land just be bare there?

    20 January 2009 at 1:35 pm

  24. Marg

    How sad 😦

    It’s going to be tough to meet next to nothing

    21 January 2009 at 8:57 pm

  25. @ Mary – these are missed for sure!
    @ Pam – Just as you enter the Red House area. And ya the barn is gone also!
    @ Joan – it is tough seeing things go and their isn’t much money being thrown around now days!
    @ Bill – My mom remembered the deer and even remembered your Great Grandfather. She said they called him something like Pappa Peters or something like that (I prob should have wrote that down somewhere)! Thanks for commenting and I miss those buildings ever time I pass by the spot!
    @ Jen – No plans that I know about but I think they might try talking the Historical Society into doing some kind of sign for the spot!
    @ Marg – I know . . now you know why I will miss those buildings!

    21 January 2009 at 10:52 pm

  26. That’s a cool looking barn. It’s a shame it got demolished.

    22 January 2009 at 8:12 pm

  27. Cheryl

    The demolition of the Inn and barn are a true shame. After living in Colorado now for over 20 years, I still treasure Allegany and my memories there. I also have been exposed here, in Colorado, to great and successful efforts to preserve and sustain precious places. Sometimes I get the feeling that ASP powers that be are very short-sighted. You folks in WNY have a real treasure in that place. I hope you will advocate for keeping it alive, low-key, non-slick, and the lovely natural place it is meant to be.

    23 January 2009 at 5:12 pm

  28. Sounds like you had a lot of good memories from the place, but you are right about how you don’t realize how big a role some things play until they aren’t there any more.

    Glad to see you posting again, too!

    25 January 2009 at 10:24 am

  29. michael printup

    My brothers and I operated The Inn in the mid 80’s for 2 years. The pics are great…loved that place and we could have never replaced the original owners but we sure had fun!

    5 February 2012 at 10:21 am

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