The History of Our B&B in Jonesville, MI
George Clinton Munro bought a Federal Style wood frame house that was built on this property in 1834. In 1840 he constructed the brick Greek Revival addition that is connected to the original house and is now the main entrance. This addition included a secret room that was used to hide runaway slaves for over 15 years during the American pre Civil War era. Local history claims that the house was used as a Station on the Underground Railroad and is said to have harbored hundreds of runaways. The runaways hid in the house for at least one day on their journey to freedom in Canada. The Munro Family lived in this house until 1945. Three elderly Munro sisters were evicted after 10 years of non-payment of taxes.
In 1948, the Munro House was sold at auction to the American Legion for $841. It was used as the local American Legion Post until they abandoned it in 1959 after a storm severely damaged the roof.
The House sat vacant until 1961 and was scheduled to be demolished because of its rundown appearance and lack of a caretaker.
Hugh Key bought the dilapidated Munro House in 1961 for $1. It was refurbished both inside and out. It was used as both a private residence and a showplace for antique pipe organs.
Norman & Theodora Ledyard bought the Munro House in 1971 and used it as a private residence to raise their family. They continued the refurbishing process and brought it back to its original appearance.
Jerry & Sandra Witt bought the Munro House in 1985 and turned it into a Bed and Breakfast with 5 guest rooms. They did this specifically to provide lodging for VIPs visiting Hillsdale College.
Joyce Yarde purchased the Munro House in 1992 and continued the B&B business. She added 2 additional guest rooms with Jacuzzi tubs and moved the owners’ quarters to the third floor.
Mike & Lori Venturini purchased the Munro House in 1999, continued the B&B business, added a spa room, became a Murder Mystery House, developed an array of special event packages including “Chef Night,” and made energy improvements.
Munro House Bed & Breakfast and Spa is the oldest house in Hillsdale County (1834), the first brick building in Hillsdale County (1840), and may be the oldest Bed and Breakfast in Southern Michigan that was originally built as a private residence (1834). Underground railroad tours are available for couples, families, and groups by appointment only.