McLallen House Bed & Breakfast
Deirdre Cunningham & Bill Chaisson
30 McLallen Street
Trumansburg, NY 14886
Location, Location, Location!
B&B keepers Deirdre Cunningham and Bill Chaisson welcome you to McLallen House in the historic village of Trumansburg, located at the crossroads between Cayuga and Seneca lakes within the Finger Lakes wine region. Our B&B is a three-minute walk to: post office, grocery store, bank/ATM, restaurants, clubs, laundry mats, bookstore, gift-shops, antiques, Gimme! Coffee, and TCAT bus-line 21 (25 mins. to Ithaca Commons). We’re only a 15 minute drive to Ithaca and Seneca Lake wineries; just a 10 minute drive to cross country skiing, snow-shoeing and hiking at the National Forest and Cayuga Nature Center; a mere 5 minute drive to Taughannock Falls (open year round), Greater Ithaca Art Trail, Discovery Trail, and Cayuga Lake wineries; and Trumansburg is home to the Rongovian Embassy, Grassroots Festival of Music and Dance, and Cayuga Lake Triathlon. Deirdre custom-plans guided bus tour itineraries for groups of 6-12.
Our Italianate Victorian, constructed between 1855 and 1857 by Chauncey Pratt, was a wedding gift to his daughter Melissa and son-in-law Joseph Biggs. Their son Hermann M. Biggs (1859-1923), who was born and raised in the house, went to Europe after graduation from Cornell University. He studied the nascent ‘germ theory’ in the laboratories of Pasteur in France and Koch in Germany. He returned to the United States and set up a medical practice in New York City. As a Progressive Era voice, Biggs campaigned persuasively for recognition of the role of microbes as the cause of epidemics–concentrating his efforts on tuberculosis. As New York’s first Commissioner of Health, Biggs was responsible for putting the germ theory to practical use in public policy. He and his wife Frances are buried in Trumansburg’s Grove Cemetery.
The house remained a private residence until the 1930s when it opened as a restaurant called The Colonial Inn. After a brief period as a rental property in the early 1940s, 30 McLallen Street became a rest home for the elderly and remained so through the 1950s. Between the 1960s and 2003 it once again became a rental property. Deirdre and Bill purchased the property in November 2003 and opened McLallen House Bed & Breakfast in February 2004.
Today as a Bed and Breakfast
McLallen House is decorated in the Arts and Crafts style (1880s – 1930s), which developed during the Victorian and Progressive eras. This choice came about because Deirdre’s professional work, as landscape curator at George Eastman House in Rochester, NY, focused on mid19th to early 20th century American landscape history and culture; she began to acquire Stickley Mission-style furniture on her 40th birthday. Bold colorful interiors feature “Egyptian keyhole” trim, high ceilings, and oak floors in the common areas that are furnished with several Stickley and eclectic pieces, oriental rugs, original artwork and plenty of books, puzzles and games. All five bedrooms have a private bath. As a member of Finger Lakes Culinary Bounty and Sweet Land Farm CSA, our full breakfasts are prepared with local, farm-fresh, seasonal foods and served fireside in the dining room; we also shop at Ithaca Farmers Market (Deirdre manages Trumansburg Farmers Market) and Greenstar Cooperative. Trained in horticulture and landscape architecture, Deirdre’s perennial gardens are a work in progress; guided garden tours are available.
McLallen House Bed & Breakfast’s Cancellation Policy
One night’s stay is charged to credit card, if reservation is cancelled within two weeks of scheduled stay. Cancellations within 48 hours will be charged full amount, unless vacancy is filled.
Commencement cancellation policy: The full amount (deposit) is charged in January of graduation year. There is no refund once your card has been charged, unless vacancy is filled.