In 1843, Carlos Latin, the founding father of Sycamore, Illinois, originally owned the property where the Stratford Inn now sits. He sold the property in 1855 to Timothy Wells, who promptly built a stagecoach stop on the site. In 1882, Reuben Ellwood bought the property and built a mansion where the former stagecoach shelter had been. Mr. Ellwood was the first mayor of Sycamore and also served in the House of Representatives. After Mr. and Mrs. Ellwood had passed away, Henry Whittemore bought the property in 1896 from the estate.
In 1926, the home changed ownership once again. However, this time with a stipulation. Mary Whittemore, daughter of Henry Whittemore stated she would be allowed to live in her apartments until her death. The owner, Henry Fargo, agreed and tore down the structure around her to build part of the Fargo Hotel. The hotel was constructed in an "L" shape around the mansion and boasted 60 rooms, some even with plumbing!
The Fargo Hotel changed ownership several times through the years and was bought in 1972 by Tom and Debra Carls, who changed the name of the establishment to the Carls Fargo Coach Rooms. Soon, however, they closed off the two upper floors of the building, as it had become extremely cost prohibitive to keep them in operation. The restaurant and lounge stayed open. Then, in 1982, they were able to renovate the two upper floors, enlarging the rooms and putting plumbing in all rooms giving the hotel a final room count of 39, down from the original 60. It was renamed the Stratford Inn and re-opened on September 15, 1983.
The clip below was captured in the Banquet Room of the Stratford Inn near the location where an individual not too long ago committed suicide by ramming his motorcycle into the brick wall. Nicole Tito and Lauren Kasmar were conducting an EVP session and captured a male voice say, "Get out of the kitchen," not heard in real time followed by Dale Kazcmarek saying a few words off in the distance. Then, Nicole says, "Come out and play." The interesting part was earlier in the session, Nicole was walking around and poking her head in the door to the kitchen area.
Male voice saying, "Get out of the kitchen."
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