Newfane Welcomes You
Visit the historic sites that dot Newfane Village and immerse yourself in the cultural, artistic and culinary scene. Soak in the beauty of nature during a hiking session in Green Mountain National Forest or hit the slopes of Mount Snow or Stratton Mountain. There is something here for you.
The village of Newfane consists of a columned courthouse, a Congregational church and town hall. They are framed and dignified by white-clapboard houses, including two elegant inns. When Windham County’s court sessions began meeting in Newfane in 1787, the village was about the same size it is now — 20 homes and two hotels. Note that there is currently only the Four Columns Inn left standing today.
Built in 1787, the village was two miles up on Newfane Hill. Beams were unpegged and the homes were moved to the more protected valley by ox-drawn sleighs in the winter of 1824.
Newfane inns have been famous for more than a century because the whitewashed jail accommodated 25 paying guests, feeding them “good pies and oyster soup” in the same rooms with inmates. By the time this facility closed in the 1950s, the Newfane Inn was beginning to acquire a reputation for gourmet fare. Economist John Kenneth Galbraith, a summer resident of the area since 1947, helped publicize the charms of both the village and the inns — whose one-time chef, René Chardain, eventually opened the Four Columns Inn at the rear of the village green.
Newfane is more than a place to dine, sleep and stroll. The immediate area offers an unusual number of antique shops and a fine old cemetery lies beyond the stores and the remnants of the railway station, which served the narrow-gauge Brattleboro-Londonderry line from 1880 to 1936.
Newfane has bred famous people among which author Archer Mayor who lives just up the road from the Four Columns Inn.
At the historical society, there is a permanent display on the West River Railway which operated between Brattleboro and Jamaica (1880-1927) and is remembered as the “36 miles of trouble”. The largest town event presently is the Newfane Heritage Festival on Columbus Day weekend sponsored by the Newfane Congregational Church.