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Newbury Park, California

Stagecoach Inn Museum

A basement full of treasures lies beneath this inn that has worn many hats throughout its 140+ years. 

Originally called the Grand Union Hotel, the Stagecoach Inn was built in 1876 and now sits hidden in plain sight in an oak tree clearing adjacent to a public park and modern-day tract homes.

It was the first public-use building in the Conejo Valley, publicized as a shooting, fishing, and hunting resort with good food offerings. Stagecoaches were the mode of transit bringing visitors to the hotel which, after various changes in ownership, served many purposes through the years such as post office, tearoom, boys’ military school, restaurant, and exclusive gift shop.

Used as a set for a western film in the ’30s, the Stagecoach is now a California Landmark, the hidden inn containing a basement museum of genuine Chumash Native American artifacts, fossils of various eras, and taxidermy. The upstairs boasts a collection of 40+ gramophones and gramophone accoutrements; historically intact rooms, antique furniture, dolls, and memorabilia. Multiple other structures and exhibits are on-site such as the Timber Schoolhouse and the Tri-Village complex featuring a pioneer house, Spanish adobe, Chumash ap (hut), nature trail, approx. 250/300-year-old sycamore tree, and antique farm equipment.

The inn offers tours and hosts many community programs. Of course, no old time-y western scene would be complete without some good ol’ fashioned haunting folklore, with rumors abounding of ghosts named Pierre, the Lady of the Inn, and the Lost Little Boy. There’s also said to be a haunted baby cradle in the inn’s collection.

Contributed by
Elise
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