Parrsboro as a town was fast growing in the second half of the 1800s. Alexander H. Dyas (a stone mason and carpenter) built the main house of The Maple Inn in 1893 in the Italianated style with its centered doorway, 3-bay facade and square tower. The gable roof is atypical.
He lived there for a short time with his big family of ten before selling the house to Margaret Tucker from South Hampton for $1,000. Her husband, M.L. Tucker, was a prominent lumberman and came to Parrsboro around the turn of the century when lumber was being transported by rail and water. This was the Tucker homestead until 1921; Margaret then a widow, selling to merchant Glynford Hatfield. The house was owned by the Hatfield family until 1946 when Edith left it to the town of Parrsboro ”in trust” for a memorial hospital.
In 1946, the house was converted to an Out-Post hospital with the help of the new Parrsboro Lions Club (founded in June 1946), who assisted in the repairs and the furnishing of the hospital. On April 8th, 1947 the South Cumberland Memorial Hospital opened its doors.
Rosemary Matthews from Parrsboro, a contemporary witness, told some of the history. She was a nurse at the hospital and worked there most of the time it was opened. When the South Cumberland Memorial opened it was first run by the Red Cross. It was a sixteen-bed hospital and could accommodate up to twenty patients.
After World War II, people who had family members die in the war donated the furnishings for the rooms. Over the doors of each room were plaques with names of families that donated the furnishings in memory of a loved one.
Rosemary Matthews remembers her father helped paint and furnish a room in memory of her brother. It was painted blue because he served in the navy. The staff cared for many patients. There were mothers in labor, sick children, people with broken bones, burned patients as well as terminally ill people. The ambulance service was run by the Smith’s Funeral Home. The doctors that worked there throughout the years were very well liked. A few of the doctors were Dr. Henderson, Dr. Elmac, Dr. Kernohan and Dr. Ryan.
There were twelve nurses on staff and usually two doctors. The third floor was used as a nurse’s residence. Some of the nurses lived there full time. If they were not working, they were always on call. The nurses had eight-hour shifts; the patients used hand bells to ring the nurses. There were loans covered by the Red Cross if the patients needed equipment borrowed, items like crutches, wheel chairs, hospital beds, etc.
The nurse’s office is where the Inn’s office is today. The breakfast room is now opened into one big room, but it was two separate rooms. The first room down stairs on the right was the women’s ward; it had two beds in it. The second room on the right was the men’s ward; it had three beds in it. Across the hall was the waiting room. This is now the guest’s sitting room.
Upstairs, the first room on the right was the maternity room; this is where a lot of people in town and surrounding areas were born. The room today is called the Delivery room. Across the hall were two Maternity rooms and a nursery. The nursery could hold up to eight cots and two incubators. Rosemary Matthews remembers the smallest baby ever born there. The baby weighed a little over two pounds, and after it was born it went down to one pound, twelve ounces. In 2007 an original bassinet was purchased, which was used in this hospital in the 50’s. The house continued to be the Hospital for Parrsboro until 1975 when a new hospital was built on Jenks Avenue.
The house was then sold to Ron and Sally Levy in 1976. They moved into the house and also ran a flower shop there. The Levy’s then sold the house in 1986 to Bruce and Kathleen Boles who converted it affectionately into a bed and breakfast and dining room as known as The Maple Inn.
The second part of the Maple Inn (or as we call it The East Wing) was the house next door to the Dyas homestead and was the new Methodist Parsonage. This house was built in 1893 by Alex Dyas in the Italianated style with square plan two storey bay windows, however the gable roof is not typical of the style.
Leaving church ownership in 1934, it was purchased by Vanessa Tupper and was owned by her and Wilfried Canning until 1978, then sold to Charles and Glenda Parker. The Parkers sold the house in 1986 to Bruce and Kathleen Boles, who already owned The Maple Inn next door. They renovated the building and joined it to the existing bed and breakfast in 1988, adding four new rooms to the Inn.
In 1993 the joined houses known as The Maple Inn were sold to Ann and Trevor Mac Nelly.
In November 2004 ,The Maple Inn was sold to Ulrike & Johannes – a couple from Austria – that fell in love not only with this beautiful province and their lovely people, but also with this wonderful historical building.
Major renovations were started in 2006 to bring the house back to its original period with all the comfort of the present day. Two rooms were joined together to form the new Empire Suite, which is decorated with original antiques from Vienna, Austria, and the front stonewall was erected.
In 2007, the whole third floor (Tower Suite) was fully renovated, a solar system was installed, the original staircase and parts of the outside of the house – which still has the original wooden boards from 1893 on it – were restored.
In 2008, the East Wing was restored (walls, stairs, crowns) as well as the Free Mason Room was brought back to its old glory. The old plaster crowns were restored and a Spa-Steam-Shower was added to the bathroom.
In 2009, the Raspberry Room was completely renovated and now has a French touch!
In 2010, the Pink Rose Room got its former look with fireplace mantel and original dusty rose color.
In 2011, we created the Black Velvet Room, which is now black and white with electric fireplace.