Ghost Watches Over Historic Inn

Pat Blair caught this photo of the Sheridan Inn over the summer.
Pat Blair caught this photo of the Sheridan Inn over the summer.

Residents and friends of the Sheridan Inn have known for decades about Miss Kate, the benevolent ghost that was the inn's caretaker in life and is believed by some to have continued the duty in death.

Many people, like Edre Maier, who've spent time in the historic building have tales of encounters with the one-time housekeeper.

As a former director of the Sheridan Heritage Center, Maier's office was originally on the second floor of the inn. She recalls one occasion when she was at a computer, looking at a blank screen, and suddenly saw the outline of an older lady with gray hair. Thinking it was the reflection of someone behind her, she turned. No one was there.

On another occasion, she says, her cocker spaniel, who accompanied her to work, went to the door with wagging tail as though greeting a visitor. Again, Maier says, no one was there. Others who worked at the inn have spoken of occasionally getting a whiff of Miss Kate's favorite perfume.

Miss Kate was Kate Arnold who came to the Sheridan Inn in 1901, and began working there as a seamstress. Over the next 64 years, she worked as desk clerk, housekeeper, hostess and sitter for the children who checked in with their families. By 1909, she'd taken up residency and had a garden in the back that supplied fresh flowers for the dining room tables, each day.

According to Heritage Center records, Miss Kate was the inn's self-appointed night watchman, making sure all candles were extinguished and everyone safe in their rooms, before she went to bed each night.

She died in 1968, at the age of 89, but many believe she continues to keep watch over the old place, because her ashes, at her request, were brought back to the inn. They were placed in a wall by a long-time friend. The exact location remains unknown.

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