One inconvenient location since 1851. It was true then, and it’s still true today. And that’s how the Story Inn, situated on Ind. 135 south of Nashville, Ind., identifies itself, although the restaurant and inn are definitely worth the effort it takes to get there.
It certainly is off the beaten path. Visitors travel the state road that twists and turns through ridges and hollers to get to the village, which was a bustling community back in the late 1800s, with a school, church and post office as well as mills, a blacksmith and a couple of general stores.
But the population of Story dwindled in the 1930s, and by the 1970s even the last general store closed. However, an enterprising couple, Benjamin and Cynthia Schutz, saw a future for Story and in the early 1980s opened a bed-and-breakfast, with rooms upstairs and a gourmet restaurant in the former main-floor general store. Later, changes in ownership brought challenges, and the inn closed in the late ‘90s.
Now owned by Rich Hofstetter, whose late father purchased the entire village at a sheriff’s sale in 1999 and restored many of the buildings, it continues to offer lodging, fine dining and even a party barn event space that has become a popular wedding site.
Today, the inn includes the entire village, where cottages now accommodate guests – along with the upstairs rooms in the old general store, where some guests say they have seen ghosts.
But the only spirits you can be sure to find are the distilled type in the downstairs Story Still Tavern, a popular watering hole for locals and tourists alike. It’s not unusual to see horses tied up outside for visitors from the nearby Brown County State Park horsemen’s camp as well as motorcycles for those enjoying the scenic, winding road to the inn.
The inn hosts live music and comedy shows, and in May is the site of the Indiana Wine Fair. For more info on Story, its restaurant, inn and events, check out the website here.