Our History

                                                                                                                             First owned as a family home by Mr. Isaac. B. Ringland (1827-1880) originally from Pennsylvania, he
                                                                                                                             moved to Malvern in 1869, working in the lumber business. He was married to Mary A. Evans, had five
                                                                                                                             children, William (died in infancy), Harvey, Emma, Mary Eva and Margaret. During his time in Malvern,
                                                                                                                             he was elected Mayor.



                                                                                                                              1890 - After the passing of Mr and Mrs. Ringland, the home was in the possession of R. E. K. Mellor,
                                                                                                                              a family associate.


                                                                                                                             1890 - The Ringland family home was sold to Julia Betts. The property was expanded and the building      
                                                                                                                             was refitted and furnished for use as a hotel/boarding house. While construction was going on, a small
                                                                                                                             bible was uncovered in a cornice, most likely from a Masonic rite when the building
                                                                                                                             was under construction.



1891- The Cottage Hotel opens to the public.



1895 - After Julia Betts' passing, the Cottage Hotel was purchased by Dr. George A. Avrill in December. Dr. Avrill spent hundreds of dollars expanding the property to house twice it's former capacity. His hotel was very popular with railway travelers, and the boarding house was the residence of the local doctor, I.U. Parsons. The property was evetually sold to his son A. D. Avrill and daughter Florence Avrill while George retired to California.



1903 - Due to failing health, Mr. Avrill leased property to C. W. Reed, an Omaha hotelier who runs the Cottage Hotel for the next two years.



1905 - Avrill trades the property for 300 acres of land, to a Mr. H. J. Bower of Hamburg, IA. The property is then leased to Msrs. Allen and LeGore, who updated the interior of the hotel and reopened it to the public.



1906 - 1956 the Cottage Hotel passes through many hands, however, many of the owners do not stay more than a year. The name changes to the Piper Hotel, and it's last owner is Cuba Cox.



1956 – The Piper Hotel is sold to Bessie Smith, Mildred Peterson and Eyvonne Wederquist who plan to remodel the hotel into a rest home with a maximum capacity of 45 people. The building reopens in October of that year as the Nishna Cottage nursing and rest home.



The Nishna Cottage then becomes a group home.



1970 – A former employee of the Nishna Cottage, Geraldine Foster-Reed takes over ownership of the group home.



The group home eventually turned into a care facility for the mentally disabled, and ultimately closed due to multiple health code violations.

Open for walk-in tours Tuesday - Sunday from Noon to 3p.m. • Closed Mondays 103 East 3rd Street • Malvern, Iowa 51551 • 402-915-2304 • email: ghostfilestvoffice@gmail.com