In 1804 Edward Houghton, son of an early settler of Guilford, used a northern portion of his family's farm to build an inn and hotel. The location was a small rise in what was then the second-most-populous town in Vermont. Essentially a wood-frame I-house with a two-story ell, the thirty-seven-room inn had a working ell and stables attached to it. The exterior is notable for its Federal frontispiece, corner pilasters, and the best example of the “square-top” Palladian windows in the area, with carved garland and swag ornament.
South of the inn on the Houghton farm is a small mineral spring that attracted attention after Dr. Robert Wesselhoeft established his water-cure in neighboring Brattleboro in 1845. In 1868 four Bostonians purchased the mineral springs and the hotel and incorporated as the Guilford Mineral Springs Company. They built a springhouse, bottling house, and pavilions near the source, and added a front porch to the hotel along with an unusual, mostly glass, rooftop cupola. They also added a long two-story livery barn. After the decline of the water-cure business follow ing the economic recession of the 1870s, one of the principals, Warren Potter, bought the property in partnership with Andrew Weeks. In 1875, they named their one hundred and sixty-five acres Guilford Mineral Springs Farm, and adapted the livery to breed full-blood Jersey cattle and other stock. Although the mineral springs structures have long since decayed, the former inn and livery have changed little since Weeks and Potter ran their stock farm here. Now a private dwelling, the house and ell of the ell and barn exist as two separate structures since a portion of the rear ell burned about 1990.