Asa Ransom House celebrated its 41st Anniversary this past Thanksgiving Day.
A little History. The Asa Ransom House has grown from two original guest rooms to ten today, with additions in 1975 and 1993 to the original 1853 structure. Asa Ransom was a silversmith plying his trade in the little fur trading post on the shores of Lake Erie (now Buffalo). In 1799, the Holland Land Company offered lots 10 miles apart in what is now Clarence, to “any proper man who would build and operate a tavern.” He erected a spacious two-story log house and tavern to house both his family and weary travelers. When completed this was the first so called hotel in what is now Erie County. The Indians of the area were delighted with the trinkets he fashioned and gave him the name “0-wis-ta-no-at-squo-nish,,” meaning “maker of silver.” Months after the completion of the tavern and log house the first white male child born on Holland Purchase arrived November 5, 1799.
In 1803 Asa Ransom finished the construction of his grist mill, the first in what is now Erie County. Settlers from all over Western New York came here to have their grain ground into flour. Up until this time the nearest gristmill was at Chippewa in Canada. The grain was ground by means of a water wheel. There was a much greater flow of water prior to the clearing of the forests. Down the stream in connection with the mill, Mr. Ransom operated a distillery. Any excess wheat that he purchased from the early settlers, was made into whiskey at the distillery, and in turn sold at his tavern.
In the early 1920’s, fire partially destroyed the mill. Mr. Ryley (owner at the time) had it restored but a short time later, it again burned and was never rebuilt. In our library, we have a picture history book that includes some very early pictures guests are welcome to view.
A special program our guests look forward to each year, is the “Marvelous March and April -Two for One”, Guest stay one night and the second night is complimentary, with the fire place rooms most popular!. Dinner is required one night, and many request a table by the wood burning fireplace in the dining room. Book early for your choice of rooms. View rooms on our new web site: http:www.asaransom. This special promotion must be booked with the Inn via email or 1-800-841-2340