Shortly before dying, this spirit finally
became an owner with plans that went unfinished.
Guess who is said to visit or reside there?
Someone else keeps her company.
Herlong Mansion represents “Olde Florida at its Best.”
This 1845 10,000 sq ft, three story, grand brick, Greek Revival Neo-Classical Herlong Mansion has been described in glowing terms as being “one of the most elegant B & Bs in the country and has been featured in travel magazines and TV such as: ABC Good Morning America, Southern Living Magazine, Conde Nast, Southern Lady, Ocala Style Magazine, World Travel Magazine and many more.”
As is common with 19th Century homes, the Herlong Mansion features central a hallway that run on both floors from the front of the house to the back. Rooms are located off these halls. On the front of the house, there is a wide, two story covered front porch with chairs and tables to sit and relax.
The large grounds have recently been replanted and redesigned by the last owners, creating a beautiful oasis for guests to enjoy. The landscaping is the cherry on the top of this beautiful property.
The Herlong has been restored beautifully to its Neo-Classical best, with renovations sure to please the guests staying here. Antiques are found in every room, along with the original “intricately laid floors using oak, maple, and mahogany,” hand-carved wooden decor and panels, and other Neo-Classical embellishments.
Herlong Mansion has thirteen rooms and suites to offer its guests. “Thirteen Rooms/Suites including two Cottages, thirteen Bathrooms, three Half Baths, one Reception Hall, two acres, a Chef Kitchen with a Double Oven and an eight burner cook-top, two Washing machines/three dryers, Ford Model A Car, and a 1910 Horse Carriage.”
There are many choices for guests to choose from:
Azalea Suite * Camellia Suite * Carriage House * Dogwood Room * Herlong Suite * Iris Suite * Jasmine Room * Magnolia Room * Oak Room * Palm Room * Pump House Cottage * Rose Room * Wisteria Room.
WEDDINGS AND OCCASIONS – Because Herlong Mansion has a beer and wine license and a restaurant license as well, this is a popular place for social events.
During 2018 & 2019, in preparation for selling the Mansion, the owners spent $350,000 for major improvements, which included: “repaved asphalt, seven updated bathrooms, new bedding/linens, an all new kitchen and laundry appliances, thirteen brand new A/C units, new landscaping, freshly painted exterior, one hundred and fifty-five new wedding chairs, new décor throughout the mansion, a new storage shed with all new landscape/maintenance equipment and a fully renovated reception hall.” (Loop net.com website)
While the owners didn’t exactly get the price they wanted, they did sell the mansion in the middle of the Covid Pandemic and were able to make some of their money back. The new owners have embraced this property and in the tradition of past owners offer fine hospitality and do their best to maintain and improve this glorious mansion and its grounds.
Built by the Simonton family in 1845, the original house was a simple, “cracker style” two story, pine farm home with a detached, separate kitchen. The Simontons were one of the founding families in Micanopy, and they chose a plot of land located near a trade route; probably near where the major highway, I 75, is today.
In 1910, a Simonton daughter, Natalie, married a wealthy entrepreneur, Zetty Herlong, who did some major remodeling, turning the house into a splendid mansion, built in the Greek Revival Neo-Classical style. Corinthian style columns greet the visitor in the front, and rich touches such as elegant leaded-glass windows, fine wood paneling, and intricately laid floors are found throughout the mansion.
Natalie and her husband wound up with a showcase mansion with plenty of room; three stories and an attic. Together, Natalie and Zetty had six children: Mae, Natalie (nicknamed “Pink”), V.J., John, Dorothy, and Inez.
A friend of Inez who grew up with her described her as being “a true southern aristocrat.” Inez was “real considerate and thoughtful.” “Always helping the needy.”
There are several different stories. One says that Natalie died in the house. Zetty Herlong married again and closed up the house; wanting to forget it. However, the children didn’t forget their forever home and all wanted it when their father passed on.
Another story claims that Inez was the eldest daughter and she moved into the house in 1909. Forty years later when her parent(s) died, the house was left in the will to all six children, which started a long court battle.
Yet, another story claims that when the Herlong father died, all the children wanted the house for themselves. Mae, Natalie, V.J., John, Dorothy, and Inez wound up in court for eighteen years.
Finally, Inez Herlong Miller, by now a sixty-eight year old retired teacher and dress shop owner, finally had the money to buy out her other siblings with the proceeds from an insurance payout after the death of her husband. Inez had dreams to renovate the mansion to its former Neo-Classical glory. Unfortunately, soon after taking possession of the mansion, she was found dead in her childhood room from a diabetic episode.
Her son, who inherited the mansion, didn’t have the same passion for restoration, and let it slide further into disrepair. It was sold in 1986 as a nearly creaky, fixer-upper opportunity. This sale was the beginning of Herlong Mansion’s revival and renewal that made it an appealing property once more.
A series of owners, each with a passion to restore, did some work on the mansion, bringing the mansion back to its former glory. It opened as a bed and breakfast, with six beautifully decorated guest rooms, three impressive suites, and three lovely cottages.
After the last former owners invested $350,000 into property improvements, making it truly turn-key, they put their beloved mansion back onto the real estate market at the end of 2019. Unfortunately, the COVID virus hit America and no one was eager to buy this mansion, as making money to maintain it and to pay the taxes was limited.
After dropping the price, the Herlong Mansion finally sold after spending some time on the real estate market. Herlong Mansion and its grounds were too glorious to resist for the new owners.
In 2021, all restrictions have been lifted in Florida, and guests flocked once again to Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast and Gardens, having been vaccinated and eager to escape their memory of the past Covid restrictions. It looks like a terrific place for social events too!
HISTORY OF MANIFESTATIONS
When people die before they can begin or finish an important project or reach an important goal, they can become restless spirits.
Hunt/Phelan Mansion, TN (A trusted servant is still trying to finish an assigned task).
Liberty Hall, KY (Mrs. Varick had traveled to Liberty Hall to comfort and help her grieving niece who had lost a child. Unfortunately, Mrs. Varick died not long after arriving. She as a spirit has made up for it in her after-life).
The Infirmary For Women, KY (Three charity hospital female patients who wound up dying in childbirth, couldn’t rest until they found out if their babies had lived).
Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast, FL (Natalie Herlong died suddenly before she could finish raising her children. Inez Herlong Miller died from a diabetic episode before she could fulfill her dream of restoring her beloved family home).
People who love their forever homes while alive, sometimes choose to stay in them; spending their afterlives there.
Joslyn Castle, NE (The three members of the Joslyn family decided to stay in their beloved home to enjoy the place and keep an eye on the activities of the living; all of which must please them).
Hartford Twain House Museum, CT (The entire Twain family moved back inside as spirits).
Whaley House, CA (Some members of the Whaley family have moved back inside their home).
Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast, FL (The spirit of Inez still enjoys the family forever home which she truly loved, while encouraging owners to restore and maintain her home. The spirit of Natalie also is there to keep her daughter company and enjoys being in the home she loved).
When a family member decides to spend their afterlife in a favorite place in this world, sometimes another family spirit stays too, to keep him or her company while fulfilling their own reasons for staying.
Stranahan House, FL (The spirit of Mrs. Stranahan is still the hostess she always was, as well as taking care of the spirits of her husband, her black sheep brother, and her father).
Old Allen House, AR (The spirit of the Allen daughter stays here, along with her son. Her parents like to visit her and their grandson).
LeDuc Mansion, MN (The patriarch of the LeDuc family has chosen to spend his afterlife in his forever home. His daughter stays with him to keep him company and enjoy the family mansion).
Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast, FL (The spirit of Inez decided to stay in the house that she loved, as well as keep a friendly eye on the owners. The spirit of her mother, Natalie, decided to stay with her and enjoys being the spectral hostess, giving a hand to the living by providing hospitality to guests).
Both spirits who reside here died too soon to suit their own goals. The spirit of Inez apparently still loves her forever home, and perhaps wants to enjoy all the perks that came from all the hard work done in restoring and renovating this structure.
Inez has spectral company. The spirit of her mother, Natalie takes care of the guests as the spectral hostess, enjoying the house she loved but most of all being with her youngest daughter who she didn’t get to raise to maturity.
When the mansion was being renovated, people working on the mansion were treated to footsteps and the sound of doors opening and closing.
In particular, the door entering Inez’s room had a mind of its own!
Guests report that curtains in their room were moving without benefit of any breeze.
Disembodied voices have been heard, as well as creaking floorboards when no one living was walking on them.
When one guest heard someone walking around his room, he asked,”Who are you?” The spirit answered in a disembodied voice; “Natalie.”
Inez’s Favorite Room
One of the places Inez likes to hang out is her old room on the third floor, now called Inez’s Suite.
It is quite a nice room now, with a queen size antique brass bed, and an elegant sitting area.
The room also has a large, white-tiled deck with a Jacuzzi spa (with two under leaded glass windows, handmade leaded glass lighting fixtures, a full bath and shower, robes and a stereo).
Inez should be very pleased!
The spirit of Inez likes to discreetly show herself in mirrors.
In the late 1990s, a couple spent the night in the Inez Suite.
They could hardly believe their eyes!
Looking in the mirror located over the dressing table, they happened to see a female apparition floating peacefully across the room, wearing a red shawl over her head, so her features weren’t visible.
They could only see her by looking in the mirror itself.
Perhaps Inez thought it was rude to appear directly in front of them and chose to let her presence be known discreetly.
Spectral Hostess on the Veranda
One early morning, a female guest was sitting in a chair on the second floor, enjoying a warm drink.
Feeling someone watching her, she looked up and saw a pleasant looking woman standing there looking at her, smiling benignly.
The woman vanished as quickly as she came.
It was probably the spirit of Natalie, because Inez likes to make discreet appearances.
Natalie was likely checking to be sure that her guest was properly cared for and comfortable.
Activity on the Staircase
Footsteps have been heard going up and down the staircase.
Witnesses report whiffs of white smoke going up and down the staircase.
An owner’s two sons decided to “prank” the guests in the room below their room.
Just before they started, a kind-looking lady appeared behind them, probably with an amused look on her face.
Natalie had raised six children and knew all about pranking. Her expression said the words;”I know what you are going to do.”
When they felt her presence behind them, they looked and saw her. She then disappeared.
Needless to say, they didn’t try to scare the guests anymore.
Guests, restoration/renovation workers and some owners and their families have had some personal experiences with both Inez and Natalie.
Paranormal investigators have caught some evidence. During one investigation, researchers got readings which were noticeably higher at the top of the stairs and in Inez’s room as well.
Most Probably so!
Today, the owners claim that the spirits are now at peace and have gone to the other side. Others think that both benign and happy spirits like to visit a lot or even still reside here. The spirit of Natalie still plays the role of spectral hostess; caring about her guests. The spirit of Inez still offers encouragement to the owners in keeping the house pristine and lovely. Both spirits also enjoy visiting and/or residing in the restored and renovated Herlong Mansion, their forever home.
Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast
402 N.E. Cholokka Blvd.
Micanopy, FL 32667
The Herlong Mansion Bed and Breakfast is located just off I 75 and just 15 minutes away from The University of Florida campus and stadium. The town of Micanopy is where the film “Doc Hollywood” was made. Herlong Mansion is included in the Micanopy Historic District.
- https://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Halloween/halloween-dining-uninvited-woman-white/story?id=11811732 Dining With the Uninvited ‘Woman in White, By OLIVIA STACEY
Our Haunted Paranormal Stories are Written by Julie Carr