At Home with B&Bs’ History

An excerpt
Staff Writer
Lancaster Intelligencer Journal

Most of Steve and Jamie Shane’s guests at the Apple Bin Inn ask a lot of questions.  The top two are pretty predictable. “After they ask where is a good place for dinner, their next question usually is, ‘Tell us about your house,’ ” Steve Shane says.

Like most Lancaster County bed & breakfast owners, the Shanes have plenty of stories to tell about their home’s history. Local B&B owners say their inns’ “past lives” both attract guests and make for memorable stays.  “Virtually every B&B has a history,” says Shane, president of Authentic Bed and Breakfasts of Lancaster County, an association with 36 member inns. “The innkeepers typically do their research because guests want to know.”

Local B&Bs’ histories are as varied as the county itself. The Shanes’ Apple Bin Inn, in Willow Street, was built as a private home in 1865, and remodeling projects have uncovered many fascinating artifacts in the walls, including an old straw hat filled with a crumpled newspaper from 1899.

Their home also hosted two dental practices during a 40 year period, Shane says. And around the turn of the 20th century, the homeowners served sandwiches and ice cream to trolley passengers bound for downtown Lancaster.  “We like to say it was an eatery and hospitality house even way back then,” Shane says.

We hope you’ll come enjoy some of our history, and a wonderful B&B experience, here at the Apple Bin Inn.  Hope to see you soon!   Steve & Jamie