The Bell Inn
One of New Brunswick’s oldest stone houses still standing, the Bell Inn was once an inn and stagecoach stop that offered homey hospitality to weary travelers on the ‘Great Road’ between Saint John and Halifax. For many years it was a well-known restaurant, but that have now closed.
The building is owned and maintained by the Westmorland Historical Society. For more information about The Bell Inn, read Eugene Goodrich’s article, A History of the Bell Inn.
The Payzant & Card Building
When the ‘Weldon Hotel’ was built about 1838 it was considered one of the finest in the Maritimes.
Its owner was Andrew Weldon, a grandson of one of the first two Yorkshire settlers in Dorchester, and well known for his sociability. One of his boarders described him as a spare man with a long beard and “an authority on people and things hereabouts.” He was also a partner for a time in the Harvey Eastern Royal Mail Stage whose coaches stopped at the hotel for meals and a change of horses until about 1858 when another line opened in association with the Bell Inn.
Like the Bell, the Weldon Hotel did not long remain in business after the arrival of the iron horse in 1868. Extensively remodeled, it turned into a general store that flourished under a succession of owners until the 1970s.
After a period of dilapidation, the Westmorland Historical Society narrowly rescued it from the bulldozer, renamed it the ‘Payzant-Card Building’ in memory of the partners who ran the first general store in it, and has maintained it ever since as an apartment house and host to the Dorchester Memorial Library.
For more information, read Gene Goodrich’s article on The Stagecoach Era in Dorchester.